It’s instructive that the first precedent for pardoning oneself can be found in one of the strangest outbursts of banana republicanism in American history.
Capricious, politically motivated, and generating more heat than light, it was a thoroughly Trumpian pardon.
The president’s action carries the same unavoidable whiff of playing identity politics with a key voting bloc of the Democratic Party.
A pardon lets the accused avoid punishment, but sears her guilt into the public consciousness. After all, an innocent woman does not need to be pardoned.
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