President Trump granted a pardon to Pat Nolan, director of the American Conservative Union Foundation’s Center for Criminal Justice Reform. Nolan was an instrumental voice supporting the bipartisan criminal justice legislation Trump signed into law last year, reports USA Today. A former California state legislator, Nolan was convicted of accepting illegal campaign contributions in 1994 and was sentenced to 33 months in prison. “Mr. Nolan’s experiences with prosecutors and in prison changed his life,” the White House said. “Upon his release, he became a tireless advocate for criminal justice reform and victims’ rights.”
Trump also pardoned former newspaper mogul Conrad Black, who spent three and a half years in prison on a 2007 fraud conviction. The White House described Black as an “entrepreneur and scholar” who “has made tremendous contributions to business.” Black has also been an outspoken Trump supporter and wrote a book about the president last year. Black’s case, the White House said, had attracted “broad support from many high-profile individuals.” Trump has used his clemency power to make political statements, pardoning conservative commentator Dinesh D’Souza, former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, and former Bush White House aide Scooter Libby, among others. Previous presidents have tended to grant controversial pardons in their final months in office. Trump has done so early in his presidency.