Trump grants clemency to Blagojevich, Milken, Kerik

In this Oct. 22, 2015, file photo former New York Police Commissioner Bernie Kerik attends a forum on criminal justice reform on the White House complex in Washington. President Donald Trump granted clemency to Kerik. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

President Trump granted clemency to seven high-profile white-collar individuals on Tuesday.

Trump commuted former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s 14-year prison sentence for corruption, calling the length of the term “ridiculous.” Trump also pardoned former New York Police commissioner Bernie Kerik, convicted of tax fraud; financier Michael Milken, who served two years for insider trading; and former San Francisco 49ers owner Edward DeBartolo Jr., convicted of gambling fraud.

Trump drew similarities between investigations that targeted him and the prosecution of Blagojevich, saying it was “by the same people — Comey, Fitzpatrick, the same group.”

Political opponents immediately condemned the clemency blitz. Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. (D-N.J.) said “the pardoning of these disgraced figures should be treated as another national scandal by a lawless executive.”

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