Giuliani floats idea of 'presidential pardons' to 'clean up' Russia probe

President Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani on Friday suggested that the president might try to "clean up" Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation -- in the form of pardons.

"When the whole thing is over, things might get cleaned up with some presidential pardons," Giuliani, also a former federal prosecutor and former New York City mayor, told The New York Daily News. He didn't appear to elaborate.

He later suggested that any pardons would come after the investigation was over. "He is not going to pardon anybody in this investigation, but he is not obviously going to give up his right to pardon if a miscarriage of justice is presented to him after the investigation," Giuliani told CNN.

In the Daily News interview, Giuliani also railed against a judge's order earlier Friday forcing former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort to get hauled off to jail.


"I don’t understand the justification for putting him in jail," Giuliani told the paper. "You put a guy in jail if he’s trying to kill witnesses, not just talking to witnesses."

Mueller accused Manafort and his associate, Konstantin Kilimnik of Moscow, of obstructing justice in the investigation into Russian meddling and potential collusion with Trump campaign associates in 2016.

Giuliani, who has spoken to a wide variety of media outlets since he agreed to join Trump's legal team this past April, railed against the president's potential Democratic opponents in the 2020 election -- including former Vice President Joe Biden -- in a separate interview.

"I’m calling Joe Biden a mentally deficient idiot," Giuliani told HuffPost. "Joe Biden is a moron."

A spokesman for Biden had no comment.

Giuliani said the Democrats needed to provide a new, unexpected face as opposed to what he portrayed as a lineup of usual candidates. "They’ve got to hit us with a surprise."

When asked about the possibility of pardons at the White House, Trump simply responded: "I don't want to talk about that. No, I don't want to talk about that. But look, I do want to see people treated fairly. That's what it's all about."

Thursday night on Fox News' "Hannity," Giuliani called for a suspension of the Mueller probe following the Justice Department watchdog's report calling the fired FBI Director James Comey "insubordinate" in his handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation.


"I believe that [Deputy Attorney General] Rod Rosenstein and [Attorney General] Jeff Sessions have a chance to redeem themselves and that chance comes about tomorrow," Giuliani told Sean Hannity, saying the Justice Department heads should bring in FBI agents from the New York office to look into Comey as well as FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page.

Fox News' Edmund DeMarche, Matt Richardson and Brooke Singman contributed to this report.