News & Politics

President Trump Denies Report Matt Gaetz Asked Him for a Pardon

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

President Trump is speaking out after a New York Times report claimed that Rep. Matt Gaetz asked him for a “blanket pardon” before Trump left office.

“Congressman Matt Gaetz has never asked me for a pardon. It must also be remembered that he has totally denied the accusations against him,” Trump said in a statement.

The New York Times piece claimed that “In the final weeks of Mr. Trump’s term, Mr. Gaetz sought something in return” for his loyalty to the president during his term. “He privately asked the White House for blanket pre-emptive pardons for himself and unidentified congressional allies for any crimes they may have committed, according to two people told of the discussions.”

The latest claim comes as the allegations against Gaetz appear to be falling apart.

On Monday, Bob Kent, one of the men allegedly involved in the scheme to extort money from Gaetz, admitted asking the congressman’s father for $25 million, but insists it wasn’t a shakedown. However, according to a report from the Washington Examiner, Gaetz, “possesses text message screenshots, an email, and a typed document that purportedly support his claims that a federal investigation into his relationship with a 17-year-old is related to an extortion scheme against him.” According to screenshots provided to the Washington Examiner, Rep. Gaetz’s father, Don Gaetz, a former Florida state Senate president, received a text message from Kent on March 16 proposing “a plan that can make [Matt Gaetz’s] future legal and political problems go away.”

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