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Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Texas Republican Donor Among Trump’s Recent Flurry of Pardons

Posted By on Wed, Feb 19, 2020 at 10:36 AM

  • Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia Commons
Helps to have friends in high places.

Amid President Trump's surprise clemency blitz Tuesday was a pardon for the former owner of a Texas construction company who just happens to be a big GOP donor, the Associated Press reports.

Paul Pogue, founder of Dallas' Pogue Construction, was among 11 people the president handed clemency this week, alongside disgraced Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich and "junk bond king" Michael Milken.

High-profile Republican allies requested the pardon for Pogue, who received a three-year sentence for falsifying a tax filing. Both Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and former Republican U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum reached out to the president on his behalf, according to a White House statement.

Turns out Pogue gave $10,000 to Paxton to help his ongoing fight against felony securities fraud charges, the AP reports. What's more, filings show Pogue provided financial backing to other Republican officeholders including former Gov. Rick Perry and state Sen. Angela Paxton, the AG's spouse.

Pogue's son Ben, who now helms the family biz, also shares his pop's deep-pocketed support for right-wing politicos, according to the AP. The younger Pogue kicked in $85,000 to Trump Victory, a fundraising committee for the president's reelection bid, and he also maxed out his direct donations to the presidential campaign, hitting $5,600 last August.

In other words: Trump's swamp draining continues.

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