Can the president pardon himself?

James Monroe's signature on a pardon document

Presidential pardon issued by James Monroe, 1822, National Archives

Can the president pardon himself?

John Harrison, Brian Kalt, Bernadette Meyler, Micah Schwartzman

Friday, January 15, 2021
11:00AM - 12:00PM (EST)
Event Details

This event is co-sponsored by the Karsh Center for Law and Democracy at the University of Virginia School of Law.

As President Trump prepares to leave office, can he give himself a presidential pardon? What are the legal arguments for and against self-pardoning? What does the original meaning of the Constitution say about this issue, and is there precedent for it? This expert panel will focus on the constitutional basis of the pardon power, its history and limits, the relationship between pardoning and impeachment, and the legal and political implications of an attempt by the president to self-pardon.

This event is made possible thanks to the generous support of the George and Judy Marcus Democracy Praxis Fund

Friday, January 15, 2021
11:00AM - 12:00PM (EST)
Online webinar
John Harrison headshot

John Harrison

John C. Harrison is the James Madison Distinguished Professor of Law and the Thomas F. Bergin Teaching Professor of Law at UVA. He joined the faculty after a distinguished career with the U.S. Department of Justice. He also served as counselor on international law in the Office of the Legal Adviser at the U.S. Department of State.

Brian Kalt headshot

Brian Kalt

Brian Kalt is professor of law and Harold Norris Faculty Scholar at Michigan State University. His research focuses on structural constitutional law and juries. His recent publications include the books Constitutional Cliffhangers: A Legal Guide for Presidents and Their Enemies and Unable: The Law, Politics, and Limits of Section 4 of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment.

Bernadette Meyler headshot

Bernadette Meyler

Bernadette Meyler is the Carl and Sheila Spaeth Professor of Law; professor, by courtesy, of English; and the associate dean for Research and Intellectual Life at Stanford University. She is a scholar of British and American constitutional law and of law and the humanities and a 2020 Guggenheim Fellow in Constitutional Studies. Her research and teaching bring together the sometimes surprisingly divided fields of legal history and law and literature. They also examine the long history of constitutionalism, reaching back into the English common law ancestry of the U.S. Constitution.

Micah Schwartzman headshot

Micah Schwartzman

Micah Schwartzman ’05 is director of the Karsh Center for Law and Democracy and the Hardy Cross Dillard Professor of Law at UVA. His research and teaching focus on law and religion, jurisprudence, political philosophy, and constitutional law, Schwartzman joined the school’s faculty in 2007.

Sponsored by

The George and Judy Marcus Democracy Praxis Fund