In his latest celebrity-related move, President Donald Trump has commuted the sentence of Alice Marie Johnson, a first-time nonviolent drug offender, after meeting with Kim Kardashian West, who advocated for Johnson’s pardon.
The move follows several high-profile pardons by the president, who is reportedly considering pardoning at least 30 more people in the days to come. It also came the week after Kardashian West visited Trump at the White House to plead Johnson’s case in a meeting arranged with help from Jared Kushner, who, the Washington Post reported, also pushed for Johnson’s pardon. (“Kushner attended the meeting between Trump and Kardashian West, and having recently had his security clearance reinstated, has been described as newly emboldened by White House aides,” the Post reported.)
Johnson, a 63-year-old woman who has served 21 years of a life sentence, was jailed on charges of conspiracy to possess cocaine and attempted possession of cocaine.
Kardashian West is the second celebrity to successfully petition Trump: Last month, Trump pardoned the boxing legend Jack Johnson after Sylvester Stallone gave the president a call.
More controversially, Trump pardoned former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, Dick Cheney’s former chief of staff Scooter Libby, and right-wing troll Dinesh D’Souza. He is also reportedly considering pardoning Martha Stewart and former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (who each have ties to The Celebrity Apprentice). And maybe, one day, even himself.
According to the Post, Trump has become mildly obsessed with the idea of issuing pardons, despite worries and dissenting voices in the White House. He has even started asking friends to suggest people he should pardon and requested a list of suggestions from his staff, according to the Post.
Trump’s enthusiasm for pardoning—and its relation to celebrity and television—has not gone unnoticed among those who could benefit from it. Blagojevich’s wife has appeared on Fox News to make the case for her husband, and, more recently, the wife of former foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos went on Fox News to specifically ask the president to pardon her husband.
In a statement, the White House said that Johnson has been a “model prisoner” who accepted responsibility for her past crimes. “While this Administration will always be very tough on crime, it believes that those who have paid their debt to society and worked hard to better themselves while in prison deserve a second chance.”