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Is President Trump Really Going to Pardon Joe Exotic on His Way Out the Door?

Tiger King / Screenshot

The more I think about it, the more I think that pardoning a man famous for a Netflix doc about a bumbling attempt to have a competitor whacked would be a fitting end for the presidency of reality TV star Donald Trump. Trump is on a bit of a tear with the pardons at the moment, handing them out to basically anyone who has been nice to him while also executing people left and right; Trump’s justice department executed ten people, making him responsible for more than 3/4 of federal executions carried out since 1963.

Still, Joe Exotic is holding out hope that Trump will pardon him. He was on TV, after all, and that seems to be about the level Trump is operating on.

TMZ reports that the Tiger King star’s pardon request has reached Trump’s desk.

It’s hard to tell what Donald Trump will do here because Donald Trump is not a rational actor. On the one hand, Trump wants to appear tough on crime so he’s executed an unprecedented number of people in his single term in office. On the other hand, Joe Exotic is somewhat famous and they’ll say Trump’s name on TV a lot if he pardons him and hearing his own name on TV is the thing Donald Trump likes the best in life, so it’s not outside the realm of possibility.

If he does get pardoned, Joe Exotic is lucky that his bumbling murder attempt came at a time when the president was more circus ringmaster than a statesman and that people were so desperate for entertainment during lockdown that they had heard of him.

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