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House Democrats Call for Investigation Into Trump Pardoning Arpaio

On Wednesday, Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee requested that their chairman, Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), initiate an investigation into President Donald Trump’s pardon of Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

The members complained that Trump bypassed conventional procedure for pardoning a convict. Trump’s pardon, the members charged, “disregards the rule of law,” represents a “gross injustice,” and “flouts” the authority of courts, one of which convicted Arpaio for ignoring an order to cease his controversial immigrant arrests.

A letter from every Democratic Judiciary Committee member held that Trump’s pardon effectively condoned racial profiling and disrespected the rule of law:

The pardon sends an unequivocal signal that institutionalized racial profiling as practiced by Sheriff Arpaio is acceptable; the pardon is disrespectful to the rule of law in general and to the federal courts in particular…

The letter also cited the committee’s apparently longstanding position that “presidents should avoid involvement in specific criminal cases in order to avoid even the perception of politicizing the administration of justice.”

“President Trump regularly ignores that standard,” the letter read before urging Goodlatte to hold oversight hearings regarding the pardon.

The White House announced Friday that Trump pardoned Arpaio. In the White House’s statement, it praised Arpaio’s “admirable service” to the United States and how Arpaio continued “protecting the public from the scourges of crime and illegal immigrants.”