Attorney general nominee William Barr said it would be "a crime" for a president to give a pardon to someone in exchange for a promise not to incriminate the president.
The question came up after Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy described how Barr supported former President George H.W. Bush's decision to pardon six people who were targets in the Iran-Contra scandal.
"Do you believe a President could lawfully issue a pardon in exchange for the recipient's promise to not incriminate him?" Leahy asked.
"No. That would be a crime," Barr responded.
Some background: Bush granted pardons to six former government officials in the arms sales scandal days before the trial of former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger, which threatened to reveal new evidence of lies that members of the Reagan administration had told Congress about the deal.
Some Democrats also see parallels between Barr's support of the pardons that capped the Iran-Contra scandal and potential moves by Trump in the waning days of the Mueller probe.
Watch the moment: