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Biden says he would not pardon Trump

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden on Thursday said that if he is elected president he would not use his power to pardon President Trump or stop any investigations into the current president or his administration.

“It is not something the president is entitled to do, to direct a prosecution or decide to drop a case. It’s a dereliction of duty,” the former vice president told MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell in an appearance on his show “The Last Word.”

“It’s hands off completely,” Biden added on how he would handle Trump investigations. “The attorney general is not the president’s lawyer. It’s the people’s lawyer. We never saw anything like the prostitution of that office like we see it today.”

President Nixon, the only president to ever resign from office, was pardoned by his vice president and successor, President Ford, after Nixon stepped down following the Watergate scandal in 1974.

Ford would go on to lose the 1976 general election to President Carter.

In December, Trump was impeached by the House over his dealings with Ukraine. Congressional Democrats alleged that Trump misused his power as president by leveraging congressionally approved aid for Ukraine to force the country to investigate Biden and his son.

Trump was acquitted by the Senate in February on a mostly party-line vote.

Earlier this week, the Supreme Court began oral arguments in a landmark case regarding Trump’s prior tax documents. Trump’s legal team has argued that his presidential powers shield him from the subpoenas that have been issued for his financial records and tax returns. 

Tags 2020 presidential election Biden campaign Donald Trump Impeachment Jimmy Carter Joe Biden Pardon

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File - A Chevrolet Bolt is displayed at the Philadelphia Auto Show, Jan. 27, 2023, in Philadelphia. Electric vehicles are far less reliable than gasoline-powered cars, trucks and SUVs, mainly because most automakers are still learning how to build a completely new power system, according to this year's auto reliability survey by Consumer Reports.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
File - A Chevrolet Bolt is displayed at the Philadelphia Auto Show, Jan. 27, 2023, in Philadelphia. Electric vehicles are far less reliable than gasoline-powered cars, trucks and SUVs, mainly because most automakers are still learning how to build a completely new power system, according to this year's auto reliability survey by Consumer Reports.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

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In this photo released by the Governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev telegram channel, a rescuer gestures as he helps people during an evacuation after storm and flooding in Sevastopol, Crimea, Monday, Nov. 27, 2023. A storm in the Black Sea took down power grids and left almost half a million people without power after it flooded roads, ripped up trees and damaged buildings in Crimea, Russian state news agency Tass said. (Governor of Sevastopol Mikhail Razvozhayev's telegram channel via AP)
In this photo released by the Governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev telegram channel, a rescuer gestures as he helps people during an evacuation after storm and flooding in Sevastopol, Crimea, Monday, Nov. 27, 2023. A storm in the Black Sea took down power grids and left almost half a million people without power after it flooded roads, ripped up trees and damaged buildings in Crimea, Russian state news agency Tass said. (Governor of Sevastopol Mikhail Razvozhayev's telegram channel via AP)

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