Democratic Rep. Dean Phillips calls on NY Gov. Hochul to pardon Trump in bizarre social media post

Minnesota Rep. Dean Phillips sparked controversy this weekend after the Democrat called on New York Gov. Kathy Hochul to pardon Donald Trump, just days after the former president was found guilty on 34 counts of falsifying business records.

Phillips, a 2024 presidential candidate before he dropped out of the race in March, first took to X Friday night with a post that can only be described as bizarre.

He began by appearing to denigrate Trump, calling him a “serial liar, cheater, and philanderer,” and “an instigator of insurrection.”

But in a surprising twist, he concluded, “@GovKathyHochul should pardon him for the good of the country.”

Although many initially assumed he was being sarcastic, Phillips doubled down on his stance Saturday morning.

“You think pardoning is stupid?” he wrote in response to the criticism. “Making him a martyr over a payment to a porn star is stupid.”

Phillips argued that the prosecution of Trump will likely result in an electoral boost for the Republican nominee, and has already energized his supporters.

Trump has maintained the trial was “rigged” and that it was a politically motivated “witch hunt.” In a news conference on Friday, he also claimed his campaign raised a “record $39 million in about a 10-hour period” following Thursday’s guilty verdict.

President Joe Biden responded to Trump’s words, calling it “reckless … dangerous (and) irresponsible for anyone to say this was rigged just because they don’t like the verdict.”

For now, it seems unlikely that Gov. Hochul will take any such steps in pardoning Trump.