“We gotta stop this guy from flexing the powers of the presidency in the next 13 days,” he said. “We wouldn’t tolerate this kind of leader as a CEO of a company or, frankly, even the guy running the local pizza parlor for the next 13 days.”
“As the leader of the free world, imagine what Trump can do — the harm he could do,” he added.
Katyal warned that Trump could use his authority to invade other countries, give away the country’s secrets, or — following in the footsteps of Andrew Johnson after the Civil War — offer controversial pardons. The former solicitor general noted that Johnson provided pardons to Confederate soldiers and others who he claimed “attacked the United States.”
“Trump could do the same thing with his pardon powers with respect to all of the people he ‘loves’ as of yesterday.”
WUSA9 wrote that legal experts agree that Trump could use his presidential powers to offer broad pardons. The network also noted that former President Jimmy Carter offered such pardons for Vietnam War draft dodgers.
According to University of Missouri law professor Frank Bowman, Trump could pardon either individual members or groups for any type of federal offense.
“From jaywalking on a federal street to treason,” he said.
Interestingly, WUSA9 claimed that Trump could pardon rioters before they are identified or arrested.
Katyal also argued that Trump should be removed from office to prevent future presidents from acting similarly — echoing columnist Yoni Appelbaum — and force lawmakers to either publicly support the president’s behavior or voice opposition to it for the record.
The lawyer previously called for Trump’s impeachment for his phone call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, whom he pushed to overturn the results of the state’s election. As The Inquisitr reported, the legal professional joins many others who are now calling for the U.S. leader to be removed from the White House for his perceived role in the Capitol riots.
According to CNN, Trump has been discussing a self-pardon with his aides. The publication cited multiple sources and clarified that it’s unclear if any of the discussions have come in the wake of the Capitol riots. Nevertheless, the news outlet said that the president has asked officials in his administration about both the political and legal consequences of a self-pardon.