Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida on Wednesday blasted the lengthy sentences given to Proud Boys members and said that he is considering pardons to “ensure that everyone’s treated equally.”
Multiple members of the group were sentenced to prison terms of up to 22 years over their involvement in Jan. 6. DeSantis noted that similar sentences were not imposed over the riots that followed the death of George Floyd in May 2020, which resulted in at least 24 people being killed and caused nearly $1 billion in property damage.
“There’s some examples of people that should not have been prosecuted,” DeSantis told Newsmax host Eric Bolling. “They just walked into the Capitol. If they were BLM, they would not have been prosecuted. Then there’s other examples of people that probably did commit misconduct, they may have been violent, but to say it’s an act of terrorism when it was basically a protest that devolved into a riot, to do excessive sentences— you can look at, okay maybe they were guilty, but 22 years if other people that did other things got six months?”
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“I think we need a single standard of justice, and so we’ll use pardons and commutations as appropriate to ensure that everyone’s treated equally, and as we know, a lot of people with the BLM riots, they didn’t get prosecuted at all,” he continued.
Republicans have criticized the Biden administration for creating a “two-tiered” justice system, citing testimony from Internal Revenue Service whistleblowers Gary Shapley and Joseph Ziegler, who described interference with the investigation into Hunter Biden during a July 19 hearing held by the House Oversight Committee.
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