President Donald Trump on Friday refused to say whether Paul Manafort, his former campaign chairman who’s been wrapped up in the special counsel’s Russia investigation, could count on a pardon from the White House.
Responding to a shouted question of whether or not he would pardon Manafort, Trump wouldn’t answer either way, saying that “I don’t talk about that.”
“I think the whole Manafort trial is very sad,” Trump told reporters on the White House lawn, as jurors deliberate charges of tax and bank fraud against his former campaign chairman in nearby Alexandria, Virginia.
“When you look at what is going on, I think it’s a very sad day for our country. He worked for me for a very short period of time, but you know what? He happens to be a very good person. And I think it’s very sad what they’ve done to Paul Manafort,” he said.
Manafort faces 18 charges — including filing false tax returns and failing to report overseas bank accounts — in his first federal trial stemming from Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 elections.