President Trump Mulling Posthumous Pardon For Muhammad Ali’s Refusal To Serve In Vietnam

Donald Trump and muhammad ali
Evan Vucci/Bebeto Matthews / AP Images

President Trump has already pardoned several people and on Friday comes word that he is mulling over pardoning another famous person, this time posthumously, Muhammad Ali, according to CNN. Ali was convicted 51 years ago for refusing to serve in the military during the Vietnam War. It happened on April 28, 1967, when as a conscientious objector to the Vietnam War, Ali refused induction into the U.S. Army. Not only that, but the World Boxing Association stripped him of his world title. Adding insult to injury, New York, as well as other states, revoked his license to box.

“I’m thinking about Muhammad Ali. I’m thinking about that very seriously and some others,” Trump said. CNN also reported on Wednesday that the White House has assembled the paperwork to pardon dozens of people, according to two sources with knowledge of the developments. This comes on the heels of the pardons he’s already given out for Joseph M. Arpaio for Contempt of court; Lewis ‘Scooter’ Libby for obstruction of justice, false statements and two counts of perjury; Dinesh D’Souza for campaign contribution fraud, as well as commuting Alice Marie Johnson (courtesy of Kim Kardashian’s intervention), a first-time nonviolent drug offender.

Ali isn’t the only one Trump is considering adding to his list of pardons. Last week, he told reporters that he was considering dozens of others, including Martha Stewart and former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, both of whom appeared on his NBC reality program The Apprentice as contestants. In the past, presidents have usually waited until the end of their term to give out pardons, but the current president isn’t one to stick to previous norms of the highest office in the land.

“Trump has not followed the typical procedure for granting pardons, often choosing instead to bypass the Justice Department’s Office of the Pardon Attorney while wielding his constitutional power,” noted CNN. But the most controversial pardon may be yet to come or at least attempted. Critics are, of course, wondering if these pardons are an attempt to send a signal to people being investigated by special counsel Robert Mueller that his power for issuing pardons is vast and can, therefore, save them, thus encouraging them to remain loyal.

“But when he was asked in April whether he would consider a pardon for Michael Cohen, his longtime lawyer who is now under federal investigation for possible bank fraud, wire fraud and campaign finance violations, Trump snapped a two-word response: ‘Stupid question,'” reported CNN.