Trump 'could pardon himself over Russian Federation but won't', says Giuliani

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President Donald Trump arguably can pardon himself of any wrongdoing in the special counsel probe, including obstruction of justice, because of his authority over the Justice Department, but that would be "self-executing impeachment", according to former federal prosecutor Preet Bharara.

When asked if he is recommending Trump not to interview with Mueller, Giuliani said, "I want to keep an open mind, and I have to just be honest: We're leaning toward not".

He stressed, though, that Trump had done nothing wrong.

Later in the same program, former Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J., dismissed the argument put forward by the Trump legal team that the president inherently can not obstruct justice.

Trump, like most presidents, has plenty of rich and powerful friends and a much longer list of rich and powerful people who would like to be his friends. So will Trump sit down with Robert Mueller's team to answer questions about the special counsel's probe?

Giuliani said earlier on Sunday that Trump most likely has the power to pardon himself. The president's lawyers fear an interview could lead to Trump inadvertently, and they say innocently, committing perjury.

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Before delving into a detailed discussion of questions raised by Mueller, Trump's legal team points out that as the chief law enforcement officer in the nation, he has the power to terminate investigations and to pardon as he sees fit.

Why would Mr Trump need to pardon himself?

He appeared on ABC's This Week programme and was asked whether Mr Trump had the power to pardon himself. Similarly, when Trump reportedly told the Russian ambassador that firing Comey had "taken off" the "great pressure because of Russia", it doesn't show he did so "because of the Russia investigation". "If he's making an implicit threat that he could escalate this with pardons, there's nothing in the letter to indicate that he's not willing to pardon himself".

"I think the political ramifications of that would be tough", Giuliani added. They wrote that Trump disputes having told Comey to let go of the Flynn investigation, and that even if he had, the president could not have meant to obstruct justice because the White House had indications the Flynn investigation was not ongoing at the time. I know based on presidential rulings, meaning the discretion of the president, Justice Department is given a certain amount of independence.

Trump's lawyers and the White House had previously denied that Trump dictated the statement, declaring that Trump Jr. wrote it himself. As arguments against even asking him about the statements, they strike me as pretty silly.

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