President Donald Trump says he may pardon deceased boxing great Muhammad Ali, who was convicted in 1967 for draft evasion. He refused to serve in the Vietnam War because of his religious beliefs, declaring himself a conscientious objector, and saying, "I ain't got no quarrel with the Viet Cong". Ali remained free while he appealed the conviction, but he was stripped of his world heavyweight title and his boxing license. However, the Supreme Court ruled in his favor in 1971, ending his legal battle. "I'm thinking about that very seriously and some others", he reportedly said. Ali's lawyer confirmed in a statement that the boxing legend has no use for a pardon.
That revelation comes just days after Trump pardoned another former boxer, Jack Johnson who was convicted of violating a law that made it illegal to transport women across state lines for "immoral" purposes, according to the Associated Press. Wrongful convictions have been erased with presidential pardons, but there is technically no longer a conviction on Ali's record. Ali died in 2016. We are looking at them.
He said he has a list of 3,000 potential names who are being considered for clemency.
"There is no conviction from which a pardon is needed", he added.
"The power to pardon", said Trump, "is a lovely thing".
Last year, the president commuted the sentence of an Iowa kosher meatpacking executive who had been sentenced to 27 years in prison for money laundering.
For Trump, Kardashian's support of Johnson was key, given the President's penchant for considering the pardoning of celebrities like Martha Stewart and former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, also a former TV personality. Johnson spent 21 years in prison on those charges.