Stacey Abrams refuses to say whether Trump should go to prison in Georgia

 November 6, 2023

Former President Donald Trump is currently the subject of four criminal indictments, with Democrats being thrilled at the prospect of him going to prison. However, one high-profile Democrat has grown strangely quiet. 

According to the Washington Examiner, two-time failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams was asked about the allegations that Trump faces in Fulton County during an interview with MSNBC host Jen Psaki.

Trump charged under Georgia RICO law

Psaki recalled how Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis charged Trump and a group of associates in August under Georgia's Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) for their conduct following the 2020 election.

"There are certain minimum requirements in Georgia law under the RICO statue as you referenced, including jail time," the former White House press secretary pointed out.

"But we are talking about a former president here," Psaki said of Trump. "There's a range of views on this. If he is convicted, do you think he should serve the minimum jail requirement?"

Abrams doubts Trump "is going to be treated the same in terms of incarceration"

"My belief is that there is a stature and a status associated with holding the highest office in the land, but that does not exonerate you or exempt you from having to face punishment," Abrams said in response.

"I would argue that, depending on what he is convicted of, if he is convicted, there will certainly be a conversation about how to hold him accountable, and if jail time is appropriate, I believe that the court and the prosecution will negotiate what that looks like," she continued.

Still, the former candidate conceded that there is little chance "a former president is going to be treated the same in terms of incarceration."

"We have to understand that there are threats that come along with having held that job that will have to be taken into account when determining punishment," Abrams stressed.

Legal expert: Trump can't pardon himself for state crimes

Two of Trump's criminal cases involve federal charges, and some legal observers believe he would have the power to pardon himself should he be reelected next year.

They include John Malcolm, who serves as vice president at the Heritage Foundation's Institute for Constitutional Government.

During an interview with Fox News this past summer, Malcolm pointed to Article II, Section 2, Clause 1 of the Constitution, which states, "The president… shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offences against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment."

Still, Malcolm acknowledged that Trump would have no constitutional authority pardon himself for state-level convictions.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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