Paul Manafort, the onetime campaign chairman for former President Trump who spent nearly two years in prison on bank and fraud charges, said in a new interview he will not apologize for his past mistakes because he’s “always had the right motives.”
During an exclusive interview with Business Insider, Manafort also insisted he does not need to explain himself.
“But I’m not unwilling to explain myself,” he said. “There are certain things that I would probably not do again. But I don’t apologize for things I’ve done in my life. Because I’ve always had the right motives for what I did in my life.”
Manafort served as Trump’s campaign chair from March to August 2016. He was convicted in 2018 on bank fraud and tax charges and sentenced to seven years in prison.
His conviction came as a result of special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and whether the Trump campaign had colluded with Moscow.
Trump pardoned Manafort in December 2020.
Manafort is preparing to publish a new book, “Political Prisoner: Persecuted, Prosecuted, But Not Silenced,” which will be released next week.
The book promises to deliver a compelling narrative about a campaign from the “government-corporate-media Establishment” to take down the Trump campaign and Manafort, described as “one of the highest profile casualties” of the war against Trump.
The book will also refute the charges Manfort was convicted on, including laundering money, tax evasion and failing to register as a foreign agent.
“These were all politically motivated charges manufactured by the Special Counsel’s team for one reason and one reason only: to get Paul to testify against Donald Trump about a conspiracy that never existed,” the book’s summary reads. “When they hear the basis of these spurious charges, Americans will wonder what country they are living in and what has happened to our system of justice.”
Mueller eventually concluded that there was no evidence that Trump and his campaign colluded with Russians, but the investigation resulted in charges against seven former Trump associates, including adviser Roger Stone, former Trump attorney Michael Cohen and former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
In his interview with Business Insider, Manafort said people who have read the Mueller report or do not believe he is a patriot are “uneducated.”
“I don’t think I play closer to the line than some,” he told the publication. “In presidential politics, everybody’s looking at what winning might mean. Everybody is. And what they end up doing depends on the situation.”