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Lawmakers request information on reported pardon for acting DHS secretary

Lawmakers request information on reported pardon for acting DHS secretary
© Greg Nash

Three lawmakers on Tuesday requested information on whether President TrumpDonald TrumpGiuliani used provisional ballot to vote in 2020 election, same method he disparaged in fighting to overturn results Trump gets lowest job approval rating in final days as president Fox News' DC managing editor Bill Sammon to retire MORE offered to pardon acting DHS Secretary Kevin McAleenan if McAleenan broke any laws while implementing Trump's immigration policies.  

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerPelosi names 9 impeachment managers Republicans gauge support for Trump impeachment Clyburn blasts DeVos and Chao for 'running away' from 25th Amendment fight MORE (D-N.Y.), as well as committee members Reps. Zoe LofgrenZoe Ellen LofgrenLawmakers briefed on 'horrifying,' 'chilling' security threats ahead of inauguration Efforts to secure elections likely to gain ground in Democrat-controlled Congress Capitol Police chief announces resignation after pro-Trump riots MORE (D-Calif.) and Steve CohenStephen (Steve) Ira CohenHouse Judiciary Democrats ask Pence to invoke 25th Amendment to remove Trump Stopping the abuse of the pardon power De Blasio mum on whether he'll block sale of Mets to controversial investor MORE (D-Tenn.), requested the information from McAleenan, according to a copy of the letter published by CNN. 

"These allegations, if true, would represent a grave breach of the duties of the President," the letter said.  

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Trump told McAleenan he ”would pardon him if he ever went to jail for denying U.S. entry to migrants,” CNN reported Saturday, citing two officials briefed on the exchange. The New York Times reported that Trump asked McAleenan to close the border and told the acting secretary that he would pardon him if the directive caused him legal problems. 

"The reported discussion between you, President Trump, and other Department personnel follows a troubling pattern of conduct that has emerged over the past two years that appears to demonstrate that President Trump views the pardon power as a political tool, or even worse, as an expedient mechanism for circumventing the law or avoiding the consequences of his own conduct," the lawmakers wrote.

They gave McAleenan until April 30 to provide the information and also requested that he and other officials who may be familiar with the reported exchange testify before Congress. 

White House press secretary Sarah HuckabeeSarah SandersHouse Republican condemns anti-Trump celebrities during impeachment hearing Sarah Sanders on Trump's reported war dead criticism: 'Those comments didn't happen' Sarah Sanders memoir reportedly says Trump joked she should hook up with Kim Jong Un MORE Sanders denied the allegations that Trump offered McAleenan a pardon and that he asked him to close the border. 

McAleenan became acting DHS secretary after Kirstjen NielsenKirstjen Michele NielsenRosenstein: Zero tolerance immigration policy 'never should have been proposed or implemented' House Republican condemns anti-Trump celebrities during impeachment hearing Acting DHS chief Chad Wolf stepping down MORE resigned form the agency's top job earlier this month. He was previously serving as Customs and Border Protection commissioner.