Mitch McConnell At Odds With Trump: Opposes Pardons For January 6 Rioters

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell opposes Donald Trump’s pledge to possibly pardon some individuals who have been arrested for the January 6 riot at the Capitol, saying he’s not in favor of shortening any sentences for those who pled guilty.

McConnell (R-KY) made the comments after being prompted by a reporter who inquired about Trump’s statement.

“One hundred and sixty-five people have pleaded guilty to criminal behavior,” he said. “None of the trials have been finished yet, but 165 have pleaded guilty to criminal behavior.”

“My view is, I would not be in favor of shortening any of the sentences for any of the people who pleaded guilty to crimes,” added McConnell.

RELATED: Trump Hints That He Would Pardon January 6 Rioters If He Wins In 2024

McConnell Objects

Former President Donald Trump said that he would consider pardons for January 6 rioters should he run for and win the presidential election in 2024.

“If I run, and if I win, we will treat those people from January 6 fairly. We will treat them fairly,” he vowed. “If that requires pardons, we will give them pardons, because they are being treated so unfairly.”

Senator Lindsey Graham, like McConnell, almost immediately objected to the idea of issuing pardons for the Capitol rioters.

“No, I don’t want to send any signal that it was OK to defile the Capitol,” Graham said. “I think it’s inappropriate … I don’t want to do anything that would make this more likely in the future.”

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Peaceful Transition Of Power

McConnell also stated that those involved in the January 6 riot should not be pardoned because they interfered in the election process.

The 2020 election was “decided on December 14 of 2020 when the Electoral College certified the winner of the election,” he said.

McConnell added that the Capitol rioters had engaged in “an effort to prevent the peaceful transfer of power from one administration to another” something that had “never happened before in our country.”

McConnell, following the Capitol riot, joined Democrats in calls for impeachment according to a Fox News report at the time, telling associates that the move “will help rid the Republican Party of Trump and his movement.”

Trump ravaged the GOP leader in response, issuing a statement saying McConnell is “a dour, sullen and unsmiling political hack.”

In July, Representative Lauren Boebert (R-CO) and ten House Republicans sent a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland demanding to know why protesters at the Capitol had been arrested and jailed while many BLM protesters were not for their role in the race riots across America.

The letter asked Garland to explain an “inconsistent application of the law with respect to rioters across the country.”

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