A new report by South Carolina’s The Post and Courier finds South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, in the waning days of the Trump administration, sought and secured a pardon for his cousin, Pastor Otis Gordon.
According to the report, the South Carolina Republican reached out to White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, requesting a pardon for Gordon. At the time, it was unclear that Gordon is the cousin of Sen. Scott. In an email obtained by The Post and Courier, Sen. Scott urged President Donald Trump to include his cousin as one of the eventual 143 pardons issued.
“I would like to ask the President to pardon Otis Gordon. Otis was convicted in 1991 of conspiracy to distribute drugs. His first conviction. He served a total of 6 years and has been a model citizen since. He was released in 1997 and is now a pastor focused on helping young men avoid the same traps he once fell in. I personally believe that he is an excellent candidate for a pardon. Happy to provide d/o/b and social security if you need it.
According to the report, the federal Office of the Pardon Attorney pulled Gordon’s criminal records Dec. 16. Six days later, Trump issued the pardon.
In a statement obtained by The Post and Courier, Ken Farnaso, spokesman in Scott’s Washington, D.C., office, said Gordon also worked for the senator, operating as security personnel.
“Otis Gordon, a member of the senator’s campaign team, acts as an advance and security staffer that ensures every event the senator attends in the state — from church functions to political rallies — is safe and secure,” Farnaso said in a statement.