Trump Pardoning of Dinesh D’Souza May Be Another Signal for Loyalists in Russia Probe

“He was treated very unfairly by our government!”

Zach D Roberts/AP

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

In a surprise announcement, President Donald Trump said over Twitter that he would pardon right-wing commentator Dinesh D’Souza, who pleaded guilty to making illegal campaign contributions back in 2014. He claimed in a tweet Thursday morning that D’Souza had been “treated very unfairly” by the government.

D’Souza has a long record of promoting far-right, racist conspiracy theories. His extremism traces back to his time as an editor of the Dartmouth Review, where he routinely outed gay classmates. From Mother Jones‘ David Corn:

Much of what D’Souza did in college as a rising conservative star foreshadowed the career of ideological nastiness to come. But relishing the outing of gay students (and at that luncheon there was much relishing) and engaging in dirty tricks to obtain those names—well, that speaks not to ideology, but character. And it is but one reason, even if now dusty, why D’Souza warrants little sympathy for being accused of once again breaking the rules to serve his ideological aims.

Some speculated that Trump’s announcement might be intended to show how he could use the pardon power in possible future cases related to his longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen and others.

This is a breaking news post. We will update as more information becomes available.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate