Though Ali was convicted of evading the draft for the Vietnam War in 1967, the Supreme Court later overturned that decision in 1971. Ali's legal fight ended in 1971, when the Supreme Court ruled in his favor and in 1977 then President Jimmy Carter granted a blanket pardon to all draft evaders.
It's safe to say that President Donald Trump is throwing a pardon party. Although Trump is reportedly very into pardoning now, especially for celebrities and those with celebrity champions, naming Ali raised eyebrows.
Trump has already granted clemency to a number people, and told reporters on Friday that "there will be more pardons". While talking to reporters at the White House this morning, he mentioned more potential pardons, saying, "I'm thinking about Muhammad Ali".More news: Former PM Brian Mulroney predicts Trump’s anger at Trudeau will ‘dissipate’ quickly
Notably, Trump has also said that John McCain, former presidential nominee and senator who was a prisoner of war during Vietnam, was "not a war hero," because,"I like people who weren't captured".
The president said football players have "seen a lot of abuse" and "a lot of unfairness" and that he wants their input on his use of this executive power. "And I felt that very strongly from Day 1". He lost his boxing licenses for three years until the New York Supreme Court ordered his licenses be reinstated in 1970. Last month, he pardoned another African-American heavyweight boxing champion, Jack Johnson, for racially motivated charges related to his relationship with a white woman in 1913. As a result, he was stripped of his heavyweight title, charged with draft evasion and sentenced to five years in prison. He died in 2016 after a long battle with Parkinson's disease.
Johnson, who served nearly 22 years in federal prison for a first-time criminal offense, was pardoned this week.More news: Nixon Did It. Why Not Trump? Crib Notes for a Presidential Summit
Trump's rejected offer comes days after he commuted the life sentence of drug running grandmother Alice Jones after being begged to do so by reality star Kim Kardashian. In March, he pardoned a U.S. Navy sailor who served a year in federal prison after taking photos of classified portions of a submarine.
It was unclear why Trump would consider a pardon, given that Ali's conviction was overturned.
"I think the pardon should go to those who kneel, that's who should get the pardons, that would be putting it in the right perspective, in the right place", she explained.More news: United Kingdom justice minister resigns over Brexit policy
The U.S. Department of Justice says, in general, it does not accept applications for posthumous pardons because its time can be better spend on living persons.