House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff introduced on Thursday a new bill targeting President Donald Trump, The Hill reports.
Schiff’s legislation, the Abuse of the Pardon Prevention Act, would alert Congress if Trump — or any future president — pardons an individual connected to an investigation pertaining to him or his family.
The House Intelligence Committee chairman explained in a statement that his bill is meant to limit the president’s pardon authority since abuses of power can amount to obstruction of justice.
“The President has a broad power to confer pardons, but not when they are designed to insulate himself, his family and his associates from criminal investigation. Such an abuse of the pardon power would amount to obstruction of justice and is not countenanced by the constitution.”
Schiff’s legislation comes following reports that former Trump lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen sought a pardon from President Trump, and that Trump’s legal team offered it.
According to Vox, individuals close to Rudy Giuliani reached out to Cohen suggesting that Trump would be willing to pardon him. Furthermore, Cohen — according to his own lawyer, Lanny Davis — authorized his legal team to “explore possibilities of a pardon.” Making the matters even more complicated is the fact that Cohen testified before Congress that he had never asked — and would never ask — for a pardon.
Adam Schiff’s legislation would prevent such issues from arising. It comes as no surprise that the California representative is pushing a bill targeting Trump’s pardon authority, given that Democratic lawmakers have long warned that the president could issue pardons for those caught up in Robert Mueller’s investigations.
This was, however, partially denied by Trump’s attorney Rudy Giuliani, who said that the president is not likely to issue pardons during investigations, TheHill notes.
For Adam Schiff, this is not the first time to target the president. Trump and the Democratic lawmaker have been exchanging blows since the launching of Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election interference.
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, Schiff was the first Democrat to announce more investigations into Donald Trump’s financial dealings, following reports that Robert Mueller had failed to find evidence of collusion with officials in Moscow.
Schiff has also vowed to subpoena Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report if necessary, putting more pressure on Trump’s Attorney General William Barr.
“We are going to get to the bottom of this. We are going to share this information with the public. And if the president is serious about all his claims of exoneration, then he should welcome the publication of the report,” he announced late February.