Trump mum on Manafort pardon: 'It's a very sad situation'

Trump mum on Manafort pardon: 'It's a very sad situation'
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President TrumpDonald TrumpCuban embassy in Paris attacked by gasoline bombs Trump Jr. inches past DeSantis as most popular GOP figure in new poll: Axios Trump endorses Ken Paxton over George P. Bush in Texas attorney general race MORE said Wednesday he feels “very badly” for Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortLobbyist Tony Podesta returns to work for Huawei Former bank CEO convicted of bribery in scheme to land Trump admin job Trial begins for Chicago banker who exchanged loans with Manafort for Trump job MORE after his former campaign chairman’s prison sentence was increased to 7 ½ years, but he would not say if he would offer Manafort a pardon.

“It’s a very sad situation,” Trump told reporters at the White House. “Certainly on a human basis, it’s a very sad thing. I feel badly for him.”

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Trump said he has not thought about a pardon for Manafort, who was convicted of a slew of financial crimes in special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerSenate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel MORE’s investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election. But he also did not rule out the possibility.

“I have not even given it a thought as of this moment. It’s not something that’s right now on my mind,” the president said.

Minutes after Manafort’s sentencing in Washington, D.C., the Manhattan district attorney charged the once powerful Republican consultant in a mortgage fraud scheme.

If Manafort is convicted in that case, Trump could not offer him clemency, as it is a state case.

U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson added 43 months to Manafort’s prison term earlier Wednesday. He faced a maximum of 10 years after pleading guilty to conspiracy charges and other crimes.

A Virginia-based federal judge sentenced Manafort to just under four years in prison last week.