The notable absentees from Trump's list of pardons

President Donald Trump has pardoned 73 people and commuted the sentences of 70 more on his last day in office, but there have been a number of notable absentees from his list.

Trump pardoned former chief strategist Steve Bannon as part of a late flurry of clemency action benefiting nearly 150 people, including rap stars and former members of Congress.

The pardons and commutations for 143 people, including Bannon, were announced after midnight on Wednesday (local time) in the final hours of Trump’s White House term.

But while the list could be regarded by some as controversial, much like Trump’s presidency, the record of pardons also raised eyebrows by who wasn’t on it.

Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner

Ivanka Trump, along with other members of the extended Trump family, were not granted pardons.

Married to Trump’s daughter Ivanka, Jared Kushner was not pardoned either. His dad Charles has already been pardoned by his father-in-law.

The younger Kushner hasn’t been charged with an offence and neither has Ivanka.

However, there are concerns extended members of the Trump family could face charges after the president leaves the White House.

Ivanka and her husband were reportedly part of the decision-making process on who made the pardon list.

Special adviser to the president Jared Kushner (L) and Ivanka Trump arrive to the signing ceremony of the Abraham Accords on the South Lawn of the White House  in Washington, DC.
Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump outside the White House in September. Source: Getty Images

Joe Exotic aka The Tiger King

Joseph Maldonado-Passage, also known as Joe Exotic as he featured in the Netflix series Tiger King, reportedly expected a pardon.

In the hours before Trump’s announcement, a limousine was pictured outside Fort Worth Prison where the former zookeeper is currently incarcerated.

Exotic is currently serving 22 years for animal abuse and murder for hire.

The former owner of the Great Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park in the US was jailed after hiring a hitman to murder Carole Baskin, the CEO of Big Cat Rescue, who was campaigning to have the zoo shut down over animal cruelty fears.

Joseph Maldonado-Passage, also known as Joe Exotic, is seen at the zoo he used to run in Wynnewood, Oklahoma in 2013.
Joseph Maldonado-Passage, also known as Joe Exotic, pictured in 2013. Exotic was not issued a pardon. Source: AAP

Rudy Giuliani

Rudy Giuliani was front and centre as Trump cried foul unproven allegations of electoral fraud after losing the election to Joe Biden.

Giuliani, who made headlines for a number of reasons in the days following the election, could be in hot water for the allegations he made about electoral fraud and for allegations of inciting violence.

A former GOP House member told The Guardian last week “there is no doubt” Giuliani was seeking a pardon.

“He’s publicly grovelling at the feet of Donald Trump … and licking his boots,” the source told the publication.

He has not been charged with an offence at this stage.

Rudy Giuliani speaks to the press about various lawsuits related to the 2020 election, inside the Republican National Committee headquarters on November 19, 2020 in Washington, DC.
Rudy Giuliani's hair dye runs during a press conference. Source: Getty Images

Julian Assange

Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder, was not pardoned despite ongoing campaigns for his release.

The US Justice Department in 2019 asked Britain to extradite Assange to the United States to face charges that he conspired to hack US government computers and violated an espionage law.

A British judge ruled two weeks ago Assange should not be extradited to the United States, saying his mental health problems meant he would be at risk of suicide.

Edward Snowden

Trump told the New York Times last year he was considering pardoning whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Snowden was a National Security Agency contract employee when he took documents and leaked them to journalists who revealed massive domestic surveillance programs begun in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.

The programs collected the telephone metadata records of millions of Americans and examined emails from overseas. Snowden fled to Hong Kong, then Russia, to avoid prosecution.

Trump’s decision over whether to pardon Snowden reportedly led to a number of disagreements among his closest allies including those in the Republican party.


Trump is facing a number of charges on federal and state level after he leaves the oval office.

There are also allegations of tax evasion which have stuck to Trump since he was elected in 2016.

President Donald Trump greets his supporters at Valley International Airport in Harlingen, Texas.
President Donald Trump has not pardoned himself. Source: Getty Images

But many reports from the US claim Trump decided not to pardon himself as it would be an admission of guilt and he believes himself to be free of any wrongdoing.

Trump also might be unable to legally pardon himself given he’s facing impeachment for allegations of inciting violence outside the US Capitol building on January 6.

with The Associated Press

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