Democrats are already plotting to retaliate following President Donald Trump’s decision to commute the prison sentence of his longtime associate and former campaign adviser Roger Stone.
According to The Hill, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) revealed in a statement published Saturday that she’s planning to “take action” in Congress to limit the president’s constitutionally-guaranteed pardon powers.
“Congress will take action to prevent this type of brazen wrongdoing,” Pelosi wrote Saturday, according to The Hill.
She went on: “Legislation is needed to ensure that no President can pardon or commute the sentence of an individual who is engaged in a cover-up campaign to shield that President from criminal prosecution.”
Trump first announced his act of clemency toward Stone on Friday. Though Stone’s prosecution was deemed “righteous” by Attorney General William Barr, Trump issued the order just in time; Stone, who is 67, won’t have to serve any time behind bars amid the coronavirus pandemic.
He had been sentenced to 40 months for charges including lying to federal investigators amid the infamous Trump–Russia collusion probe, according to The Washington Post.
Of course, Pelosi is feeling no sympathy for Stone’s health concerns.
“President Trump’s decision to commute the sentence of top campaign advisor Roger Stone, who could directly implicate him in criminal misconduct, is an act of staggering corruption,” Pelosi wrote in her Saturday statement, according to The Hill. “All who commit these illegal acts should be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law,” she added.
Pelosi isn’t the only one complaining about Trump’s decision to commute Stone’s sentence.
“Stone lied and intimidated witnesses to hide Trump’s exploitation of the Russian hack of his opponent’s campaign,” California Democrat and longtime Trump foe Rep. Adam Schiff said, according to USA Today. “With Trump there are now two systems of justice in America: One for Trump’s criminal friends and one for everyone else.”
Some also say that Trump’s move will hurt him politically ahead of the 2020 election. But Stone, for his part, is grateful for Trump’s mercy.
“The president has saved my life,” the 67-year-old said on Friday, according to NBC News, “[a]nd he’s given me the opportunity to fight for vindication.”