In this file photo dated December 18, 2018, former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn leaves after the delay in his hearing in the U.S. District Court in Washington.
AFP / Getty Images
President Donald Trump is considering a pardon for former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn on Tuesday night, according to several reports.
Axios first reported that Trump has said aides he plans to apologize to Flynn, who pleaded guilty in 2017 to lying to the FBI. CNN later reported that a Flynn pardon was being considered but not yet decided.
Flynn's conviction was overturned for two years after Flynn worked with Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Flynn later replaced his legal team, who withdrew their guilty plea. The Justice Department moved in May to drop the charges against Flynn, but a lawsuit ended in August with a judge who refused to dismiss the charges immediately. His case has been in legal limbo ever since.
With less than two months in Trump's tenure, speculation has been rife that he will pardon political allies convicted of federal crimes such as Paul Manafort and George Papadopoulos, or even issue preventative pardons to family members or himself, although it is legal to do so by such movements – especially for yourself – is questionable.
While Trump can issue pardons for federal crimes, he cannot do so for state crimes. The New York Attorney General and the Manhattan District Attorney have reportedly launched parallel civil and criminal investigations into Trump for potential tax fraud.