Trump revokes 5-year lobbying ban for administration officials on last day in office

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President Trump signed an executive order lifting a five-year lobbying ban for members of his administration just hours before he leaves office and Joe Biden is sworn in as the next president of the United States. 

The order, issued early Wednesday along with a flurry of pardons for former top campaign and White House officials, nullifies an ethics pledge made by all members of his administration that would have required them to adhere to a five-year cooling-off period before engaging in lobbying services. 

“Employees and former employees subject to the commitments in Executive Order 13770 will not be subject to those commitments after noon January 20, 2021,” the order reads. 

Former President Clinton signed a similar waiver with only weeks left in his term, The Associated Press noted

Trump ran for president in 2016 partially on a promise to “drain the swamp” and regularly attacked politicians, lobbyists and members of the “political elite” who he said were out of touch with Americans and put their own interests above those of the nation. 

Trump also granted clemency to dozens of people in a late-night pardoning blitz.

Among those pardoned by Trump overnight Tuesday were former chief strategist Stephen Bannon, rapper Lil Wayne, GOP fundraiser Elliot Broidy and former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick (D). 

Bannon has been indicted on wire fraud and other financial crimes. 

“Mr. Bannon has been an important leader in the conservative movement and is known for his political acumen,” the White House said in issuing his pardon. 

Trump is slated to speak on Wednesday morning before departing Washington, D.C., for Florida. He will not attend Biden’s inauguration at noon. 

Tags Bill Clinton Donald Trump Donald Trump Joe Biden Steve Bannon Steve Bannon

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