MSNBC's Maddow Blasts Trump's Pardon at RNC: Like the Emperor 'Deciding Who Lives'
Anti-Trump host calls the president's pardon 'creepy'
MSNBC host Rachel Maddow reacted to President Donald Trump's pardon of Jon Ponder, the convicted bank robber who turned his life around, saying the president made the event comparable to the Roman Coliseum where “there are the gladiators before them, and the emperor makes a show of showing his divine mercy, right, in deciding who lives and who dies.”
Anti-Trump Maddow said it was “kind of creepy” for Trump to “fixate” on the pardon power.
“I mean, in concept, it’s a little like the Roman Coliseum and then — there’s the gladiators before them, and the emperor makes a show of showing his divine mercy, right, in deciding who lives and who dies."
"So, there’s that in terms of the showmanship of it. But also, to continue to showcase the president’s fascination with the pardon power feels different, even in this presidency than it would in another presidency," Maddow said.
"It would be kind of creepy for any president to fixate on it in this way, but with what this president has done with pardons for people who have otherwise potentially been able to tell tales about him and his potential criminal behavior to prosecutors who are engaged in ongoing investigations of the president, his cronies, his campaign, his inauguration, and his businesses, yeah, of course, he digs pardons," she added.
"Of course he’s fascinated with that. Of course, he wants to talk about that all the time," Maddow continued.
"It’s — it means something different when your son is actively defying subpoenas to give testimony under oath, the week that he’s testifying on your behalf at your convention.”
As News Thud reported:
Trump explained as he prepared the formal pardon “Since being released from prison on a bank robbery conviction, Ponder has worked to help other former prisoners in the Las Vegas area to successfully reintegrate into American society.”
“Two years ago, I was honored to tell Jon Ponder’s story in the Rose Garden on the National Day of Prayer," Trump said.
“Today I’m thrilled to welcome him back to the White House.
"Jon’s life is a beautiful testament to the power of redemption.”
“Jon dedicated his life to Christ. He spent the rest of his time in prison studying the Bible.”
"In the last 10 years since Jon was released, he’s created one of the most successful reentry programs, Hope for Prisoners, in Las Vegas. I was glad to speak there earlier this year.”
“Jon, we honor your devotion to showing returning citizens that they are not forgotten. We believe that each person is made by God for a purpose."
"I will continue to give all Americans, including former inmates the best chance to build a new life and achieve their own American Dream."
"My hope for America is that former incarcerated people will be afforded the opportunity to take advantage of the fact that we live in a nation of second chances.” Trump concluded.