Former U.N. Ambassador and presidential candidate Nikki Haley said Tuesday she would “favor” pardoning former President Donald Trump if he’s convicted in the documents probe, and believes it’s “less about guilt” and is more about the good of the country.
Haley previously defended the former president following the announcement of the indictment, calling the charges “vendetta politics,” but has also said Trump was “incredibly reckless” if the contents of the indictment are true. The former South Carolina governor told Clay Travis and Buck Sexton that imprisoning a former president “would be terrible for the country.”
“When you look at a pardon, the issue is less about guilt and more about what’s good for the country, and I think it would be terrible for the country to have a former president in prison for years because of a documents case,” said Haley. “That’s something you’ve seen in a third world country. I saw that at the United Nations. So I would be inclined in favor of a pardon.”
The Biden administration arrested Trump Tuesday in Miami at a federal courthouse for allegedly mishandling classified documents relating to the investigation spearheaded by Special Counsel Jack Smith. The former president was charged with 31 counts of alleged violations of the Espionage Act, as well as several others including obstruction and making false statements.
“If the claims in the indictment are true — if they’re true — then Trump was incredibly reckless with our national security, and that’s not okay,” Haley said Monday. “I’m not going to presume President Trump’s guilt. I think we all need to let this trial play out. We need to see exactly what happened.”
BREAKING: Donald Trump Arrested
The former President has arrived at the Courthouse in Miami and has been arrested.
This marks the second time that Trump has been taken into custody.
It appears evident that this arrest may be politically motivated, orchestrated by his… pic.twitter.com/u82HuujwII
— Sulaiman Ahmed (@ShaykhSulaiman) June 13, 2023
Conservative businessman and presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy sent a letter to his 2024 opponents on Tuesday, Republicans and Democrats alike, asking them to join him in a pledge to either pardon Trump or explain why they won’t.
“I had a great working relationship with President Trump and what’s happening is unfortunate. I think the Justice Department has handled this whole thing terribly. You can’t have one standard for Democrats like Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden, and then another standard for Republicans like Donald Trump,” said Haley.
Several other 2024 Republican candidates have defended the former president, like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and conservative radio show host Larry Elder, calling the indictment “weaponization” of the justice system and “partisan prosecutions.” Others, like former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, have criticized Trump’s legal troubles and conduct.
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