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Gaetz, below investigation for intercourse allegations, sought blanket pardon from Trump: Sources

It is unclear whether the White House knew about the investigation at the time.

April 7, 2021, 1:28 a.m.

4 min read

Gaetz’s search for a preventive pardon for crimes that may have been committed was first reported by the New York Times.

Trump was aware of Gaetz’s request, but the idea was quickly scrapped in the White House, sources told ABC News.

The Justice Department is investigating whether Gaetz had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl and paid to travel with him, which may violate sex trafficking laws.

PHOTO: Rep. Matt Gaetz accompanies President Donald Trump to Game 5 of World Series Baseball in Washington on October 27, 2019.

MP Matt Gaetz accompanies President Donald Trump to the fifth game of World Series baseball in Washington on October 27, 2019.

Gaetz, who has denied any wrongdoing, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from ABC News.

The investigation into Gaetz began last year when Trump was still president. Sources familiar with the matter have told ABC News about it. It is not clear whether the White House or Gaetz were aware of the ongoing investigation at the time. Then-attorney general Bill Barr has been briefed several times on the progress of the investigation, the sources said.

“Apparently, the request was such that even President Trump turned it down,” Michael Waldman, president of NYU’s not-for-profit Brennan Center for Justice, told ABC News.

“A blanket pardon would be exceptional,” said Waldman. “A blanket pardon for an investigated member of Congress would have been even more extraordinary. It is an open question whether a president can grant a blanket pardon in advance as it is a request to break the law.”

Gaetz previously advocated Trump’s presidential pardon and appeared on Laura Ingrahams Fox News Show on November 24 to explain that Trump “should forgive Michael Flynn, forgive the Thanksgiving turkey, he should all of himself.” awarded to his administrators to Joe. ” Exotic if you have to. “

“Because you see a bloodlust from the radical left that will only be quenched if they follow up on the people who have worked so hard to animate the Trump administration with the politics, strength and effectiveness needed for the American one People were provided, “said Gaetz. “I think the president should use this pardon effectively and robustly.”