The post-sentencing statement by Paul Manafort‘s lawyer on Thursday suggests that the former Trump campaign chairman is angling for a presidential pardon.
In his short remarks, Manafort’s lawyer echoed Donald Trump‘s language and said that today’s light sentence is further proof that “there is absolutely no evidence that Paul Manafort was involved with any collusion with any government official from Russia.”
Paul Manafort’s lawyer addresses reporters after 47-month sentence handed down: “He made clear he accepts responsibility for his conduct.”
He added: “There is absolutely no evidence that Paul Manafort was involved with any collusion with any government official from Russia.” pic.twitter.com/u13HMw3c2W
— ABC News (@ABC) March 8, 2019
In a tweet, Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff warned that the statement by Manafort’s lawyer “was no accident” and appeared to be a “deliberate appeal for a pardon.”
The statement by Paul Manafort’s lawyer after an already lenient sentence — repeating the President’s mantra of no collusion — was no accident. It was a deliberate appeal for a pardon.
One injustice must not follow another.
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) March 8, 2019
Trump is obstructing justice by dangling a pardon
Donald Trump has been dangling a pardon for Paul Manafort throughout the course of the Mueller investigation.
As MSNBC‘s Chris Hayes noted on Thursday, it has largely been effective for the president. After all, Manafort has given no useful information to investigators and he continues to sit on a “set of truths” all the way to prison.
Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell said on Thursday that Manafort’s lawyer’s mimicry of Trump following the sentencing was further proof that a pardon is his ultimate endgame.
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) March 8, 2019
But as the Democratic congressman also said, dangling pardons over witnesses is a crime.
“Whether he pardons him or not, if he’s trying to keep him quiet, that is still obstruction of justice,” Swalwell said.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.