Donald Trump Will Resign And Have Mike Pence Pardon Him, Columnist Predicts

President Donald Trump gestures to Vice President Mike Pence on election night in the East Room of the White House.
Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

In a Friday column for The Hill, Brent Budowsky wrote that he expects President Donald Trump to resign from the presidency shortly before Inauguration Day.

Trump has not yet conceded the race, but Democrat Joe Biden is all but certain to be inaugurated on January 20, given that Trump campaign lawyers’ legal challenges have had little success in the courts.

According to Budowsky, Trump will use the lame duck phase of his presidency to issue pardons to allies and members of the first family.

The commander-in-chief will also try to protect himself from investigations, Budowsky claimed, which is why he will step down and have Vice President Mike Pence pardon him.

“A presidential pardon by Pence would not offer protection from cases originating in states, but those cases will be far more manageable,” he wrote.

“Without a federal pardon, it is almost guaranteed that Trump will spend much of the coming years mired in federal cases that could pose grave legal risks for him, and create problems for executing any multibillion-dollar business deal.”

Budowsky described Trump as a “genius at brand marketing,” saying that he believes the president will successfully monetize his popularity among Republican voters and become a media mogul.

According to the columnist, the commander-in-chief will most likely strike some sort of a blockbuster deal with a conservative-leaning media organization like Fox News or Newsmax and remain an influential voice on the right.

“If Trump takes the course I predict… he will emerge with billions of dollars of new and recurring wealth,” he concluded.

Budowsky added that there is a chance Trump spends the remainder of his time in office purging disloyal officials from government agencies, which could endanger national security and further damage America’s reputation abroad.

President Donald Trump speaks in the briefing room at the White House.
  Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

According to Axios‘ sources, Trump has told confidants that he wants to start a digital media company that would compete with Fox News.

In the coming weeks, individuals briefed on the matter told the publication, he will try to “wreck” Fox News in order to pave the way for his own subscription-based channel.

Per The New York Times, however, Trump is considering running again in 2024. He has reportedly told advisers that he plans on announcing his 2024 campaign as soon as Biden is officially declared the winner of the 2020 presidential election.

Some share Budowsky’s fears. Texas Democrat Elizabeth Hernandez recently said that she, too, expects the commander-in-chief to resign “as a better set up” for his eldest son to run for the presidency.