Democrats are kind of freaking out about Trump’s Scooter Libby pardon and what it means

Though they are powerless to stop him, House Democrats are doing what they can to paint President Trump’s pardon of Scooter Libby as “contempt for the rule of law” — amid fears that the president might soon use the power of the pardon to protect people close to him who are facing scrutiny via Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi thought the message was clear in Trump’s pardon for Libby, the aide to former Vice President Dick Cheney who was convicted of perjury, obstruction of justice, and making false statements in connection with the leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame’s identity.

The Libby pardon arrives at the same time federal investigators are closing in on Michael Cohen, one of Trump’s closest confidants, and follows reports that Trump’s attorneys had tried to offer pardons to his former campaign chair Paul Manafort, who has been indicted in Mueller’s probe. Pelosi seems to be connecting those dots.

If you can’t quite remember who Scooter Libby is and why he needed a pardon at all, Vox’s Jennifer Williams has you covered: