'Hold on to your seats': Trump facing reality of ‘2 avenues’ of criminal charges after loss to Joe Biden

'Hold on to your seats': Trump facing reality of ‘2 avenues’ of criminal charges after loss to Joe Biden
President Donald J. Trump, image via Shutterstock.

One day after Donald Trump learned he won't be serving a second term, CNN legal analyst Elie Honig said the president needs to prepare himself for the possibility of criminal indictments the moment President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in.

Speaking with host Christi Paul, the former federal prosecutor said the country should expect a flurry of pardons from Trump including the possibility he may try to pardon himself.

"The president by law retains all of his power until January 20th with the inauguration. With that said, what do you expect is going to happen between now and Inauguration Day?" host Paul asked.

"Hold on tight to your seats," Honig began. "I think President Trump is going to use every last ounce of power right up until 11:59:59 on January 20th. Watch for pardons; he has the pardon power. Many presidents have used the pardon power in their final dates in office. I'd watch for him to pardon his political allies, Michael Flynn, George Papadopoulos. I would look at the possibility that he might pardon his family members who are under state investigations for fraud. Now presidential pardon doesn't cover people in a state prosecution, but might well cover them for federal purposes. Then the big question is: will the president try to pardon himself? It's never happened in our history and we don't actually know if that's lawful or not. But if he tries it, we could find out."

Continuing in that vein, the former prosecutor pointed out what the future holds for the president.

"He loses his protections," he began. "He's avoided trouble by being in the White House — there are laws and policies, especially in the Justice Department, that protect a sitting president. He will not be the sitting president at 12:01 on January 20th."

"He's got potential exposure from the federal government, from the Department of Justice, and potentially from the Manhattan prosecutors — they are focusing on the Manhattan state prosecutors, the D.A's office are focusing on various financial fraud," he added. "In some ways that's easier to prove and easier to prosecute than some of the things that might be federal; for example obstruction of justice. But he's looking at at least two different avenues of potential criminal exposure once he gets out of office."

Watch below:

CNN 11 08 2020 06 22 02 youtu.be

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

alternet logo

Tough Times

Demand honest news. Help support AlterNet and our mission to keep you informed during this crisis.