On Wednesday, President Donald Trump followed through on a campaign promise he made to Conrad Black, a former media mogul and business partner, by pardoning him for fraud and obstruction of justice convictions.
In late 2015, Black — who was convicted in 2007 and spent more than three years in prison before being released in 2012 — wrote a piece for National Review headlined “Trump Is the Good Guy.”
“It is time to look more seriously at the Donald Trump presidential candidacy,” the piece begins. “Donald Trump — who, I should disclose, is an old friend, a fine and generous and loyal man, and a delightful companion — is striking very close to the heart of the American problem: the corrupt, dysfunctional political system and the dishonest media.”
Trump, who also partnered with Black in the construction of Trump Tower in Chicago, shared Black’s piece on Twitter, adding that “[a]s one of the truly great intellects & my friend, I won’t forget!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 15, 2015
That campaign promise turned out to be one Trump kept. On Wednesday, the White House granted Black a full pardon. The administration’s justification for the pardon doesn’t cite a legal basis but notes Black’s “tremendous contributions to business, as well as to political and historical thought.” As Politico describes it, Black was convicted for his role “in a ploy to swindle millions of dollars from investors in his media company.” [Continue reading…]