Rep. Dean Phillips Urges Gov. Hochul to Pardon Trump for National Unity

 June 2, 2024

In a surprising political plea, Rep. Dean Phillips has called for a pardon for former President Donald Trump.

According to Fox News, the House Democrat suggests this move could prevent Trump from becoming a martyr, potentially dampening his campaign's current momentum.

Rep. Dean Phillips, who had previously launched a challenge against President Joe Biden in the Democratic primaries before endorsing him, argued that the conviction of Trump might paradoxically strengthen his support base. His rationale is grounded in the surge of donations Trump's campaign received following his guilty verdict. The former president's campaign garnered almost $53 million in just 24 hours after the verdict— a figure that nearly doubles his previous single-day fundraising record.

Trump’s Legal Conviction Catalyzes Campaign Contributions

The conviction seemed to invigorate the MAGA movement, a key supporter group of Trump, leading to a significant intensification in their activist endeavors and financial contributions. This situation led Rep. Dean Phillips to suggest that, contrary to expectations, the judicial findings have not hindered but rather bolstered Trump's public and financial appeal.

Rep. Dean Phillips articulated his concerns about the situation, stating, "Donald Trump is a serial liar, cheaper, philanderer, a six-time declarer of corporate bankruptcy, an instigator of insurrection, and a convicted felon who thrives on identifying himself as a victim," urging New York Governor Kathy Hochul to consider a pardon. He added that a pardon might not only neutralize Trump's portrayal as a victim but could be strategically beneficial for the country.

Trump's finance narratives saw marked changes following his indictment and subsequent conviction on all 34 felony counts. The campaign's quick turnaround in raising funds post-verdict underscores the political capital he still commands.

Phillips Spotlights Potential Political Backfire

Phillips has voiced his concerns over the unintended consequences of legal actions against Trump. He emphasized that although Trump is being legally processed, his portrayal as a victim in these actions has galvanized his base, possibly leading to a stronger electoral showing than anticipated.

Rep. Dean Phillips clarified his stance further. "You think pardoning is stupid? Making him a martyr over a payment to a porn star is stupid. Election charges are entirely different," he argued, pointing out the nuances in the crimes involved and the potential political fallout.

Moreover, in April, Trump's joint fundraising efforts with the Republican National Convention outstripped those of Biden's campaign and the Democratic National Convention. However, Biden's campaign still holds a significant advantage in terms of cash on hand by the end of April, illustrating a complex and competitive financial landscape in the run-up to the next election.


Rep. Dean Phillips, while withdrawing from his brief primary race challenge against Biden, had thrown full support behind him, recognizing Biden's attributes of "decency and integrity." He called on his supporters to refocus their efforts on supporting the current President amidst these challenging times.

Reflection on Election Strategies and Party Dynamics. Dean Phillips's suggestion for a pardon comes at a crucial time when both parties are gearing up for rigorous campaign battles, emphasizing strategic rather than purely ideological stances.

As the story unfolds, Trump’s legal struggles inadvertently shaping his political campaign signal a unique moment in American politics where legal outcomes directly intersect with electoral strategies. Whether Governor Hochul will entertain Phillips's plea remains uncertain, but the proposal itself is a stark reminder of the complex and often counterintuitive elements at play in political strategies.

About Victor Winston

Victor is a freelance writer and researcher who focuses on national politics, geopolitics, and economics.

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