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Graphic: CNN

It’s a white, joyous Christmas for convicts with connections to President Trump. The justice system — and the law enforcers who worked years to prosecute these cases — got a big lump of coal. 

Why it matters: A senior administration official with no role in the pardon process tells Axios that people have been approaching him to ask for pardons for themselves, their clients — even their former clients. The request is a sign of the final days free-for-all among people who want to be on Trump’s extensive pardons list for personal and political allies.

Last evening, Trump granted full pardons to 26 more people, including his former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, longtime associate Roger Stone and Charles Kushner, father of Jared Kushner, Axios' Zach Basu writes.

  • Manafort was one of the first major Trumpworld figures to be charged in the Mueller investigation.
  • Stone was charged and convicted for lying to investigators who were probing his contacts with WikiLeaks, which released damaging Democratic emails hacked by the Russian government during the 2016 campaign.
  • Charles Kushner is a developer who pleaded guilty in 2004 to filing false tax returns, retaliating against a witness and making false statements to the FEC as part of a prosecution by then-U.S. Attorney Chris Christie.

True story: Manafort and Stone were once in business together. In the Reagan years of the early '80s, Black, Manafort & Stone was one of the most formidable lobby shops in town.

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Go deeper

Off the Rails

A premeditated lie lit the fire

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

"Jared, you call the Murdochs! Jason, you call Sammon and Hemmer!”

President Trump was almost shouting. He directed his son-in-law and his senior strategist from his private quarters at the White House late on election night. He barked out the names of top Fox News executives and talent he expected to answer to him.

Jan. 6 panel subpoenas 2 far-right "America First" activists

The House panel investigating the Capitol riot, from left; Reps. Bennie Thompson, Liz Cheney, Adam Kinzinger and Jamie Raskin on Capitol Hill in December. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The House select committee investigating the Capitol riot issued subpoenas Wednesday for far-right leaders Nick Fuentes and Patrick Casey, who allegedly encouraged followers to go to D.C. and challenge the 2020 election results.

Why it matters: The action underscores the panel's increasing focus on rallies held ahead of the Capitol attack and how extremists were drawn to former President Trump's baseless claims of widespread voter fraud, per the New York Times.

Democrats fail to change Senate rules to pass voting rights bill

Senate Majority Leader during a news conference in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Democrats failed Wednesday night to change Senate filibuster rules to pass the voting rights bill, with Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) voting with Republicans.

The big picture: The failed effort came after Senate Republicans blocked the voting rights measure from coming to a final vote earlier Wednesday.