Two of Donald Trump's 143 Pardons and Commutations are Rappers

In his final hours in office, President Donald Trump released a new wave of presidential pardons, including two for high-profile rappers.

Trump announced Wednesday morning that rappers Lil Wayne and Kodak Black, who were each convicted for separate federal gun charges, would be granted clemency for their crimes. Lil Wayne received a full pardon, while Kodak Black's sentence was commuted.

Lil Wayne, 38, pleaded guilty last month to possessing a loaded, gold-plated handgun in Miami in December 2019. He could have faced a sentence of up to 10 years in prison at a January 28 court hearing in Miami.

Kodak Black, 23, was currently serving a four-year sentence in federal prison after pleading guilty for possession of multiple illegal firearms last year.

Both artists expressed support for the president in the days leading up to the November election. In October, Lil Wayne tweeted a photo with Trump and praised him for his "Platinum Plan" to help Black Americans.

Lil wayne
On Tuesday, Trump granted to clemency to the rapper Lil Wayne in one of his final acts as president. Here, Lil Wayne performs onstage during BACARDI, Swizz Beatz and The Dean Collection bring NO COMMISSION back to Miami to celebrate "Island Might" at Soho Studios on December 9, 2017 in Miami, Florida. Nicholas Hunt/Getty

"Just had a great meeting with @realdonaldtrump @potus besides what he's done so far with criminal reform, the platinum plan is going to give the community real ownership," the rapper tweeted. "He listened to what we had to say today and assured he will and can get it done."

Just had a great meeting with @realdonaldtrump @potus besides what he’s done so far with criminal reform, the platinum plan is going to give the community real ownership. He listened to what we had to say today and assured he will and can get it done. 🤙🏾 pic.twitter.com/Q9c5k1yMWf

— Lil Wayne WEEZY F (@LilTunechi) October 29, 2020

Under the Platinum Plan, which Trump unveiled in September during an event in Atlanta, Georgia, he promised to create 3 million new jobs for Black Americans and 500,000 new Black-owned businesses.

Kodak Black issued a similar tweet in early November, calling the president's plan to aid the Black community "right."

"What do you think of the 'Platinum Plan?' [Bradford Cohen] sent it to me and I read it," he tweeted from prison. "This is what the community needs.... more ownership. That plan is right! I want to help with justice reform when I am out as well. @realDonaldTrump #justicereform #prisonreform."

What do you think of the platinum plan? @bradfordcohen sent it to me and I read it ,this is what the community needs.... more ownership. That plan is right! I want to help with justice reform when I am out as well. @realDonaldTrump #justicereform #prisonreform

— Kodak Black (@KodakBlack1k) October 26, 2020

Trump's clemency for the rappers comes amid a wave of 143 new commutations and pardons that the president issued in one of his final acts in office.

The list of pardons included several for non-violent offenders who have been sentenced for drug charges or crimes that criminal justice advocates say highlight the broken nature of the country's incarceration system.

In December, Trump issued multiple controversial pardons for allies and those who formerly worked alongside his family and campaign.

Among that list included Charles Kushner, the father of Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, along with former adviser Roger Stone and Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort – both of whom were sentenced in relation to the investigation into meddling in the 2016 election.

The news of Trump using his final day as commander in chief to grant clemency to 143 people has been criticized, with Democratic Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal calling them "an abuse of power."

"They'll be another abuse of power by a corrupt, failed, one-term, twice-impeached president who has routinely undermined the rule of law, the constitution, and our democracy."

On Wednesday, Trump will leave office and President-elect Joe Biden will be sworn in as the 46th president of the United States.

Trump will not attend the inauguration, but instead host a separate farewell event at Joint Base Andrews before he flies to his resort home in Florida.