Kim Kardashian West, whose appeal to President Donald Trump led to freedom for imprisoned 63-year-old drug offender Alice Marie Johnson, recounted her advocacy during an appearance with Johnson on the “Today” show Thursday.
“We had a really great conversation about women and wanting to help each other, and I knew that she would’ve understood Alice,” Kardashian West said. “She immediately was so receptive and so great.”
The effort eventually led the reality TV star to meet with the president and share the story of Johnson, who served 21 years of a life sentence for aiding a multimillion-dollar cocaine ring after losing her job and struggling to support her family. Trump granted clemency to Johnson on June 6, a week after the White House meeting.
Kardashian West acknowledged that she has opposed Trump’s policies in the past. But she said the president immediately showed compassion for Johnson.
“This has fulfilled my heart,” she said of her work on Johnson’s behalf. Despite the advocacy success, she said she has no plans to go into politics.
Johnson, for her part, said she had no idea who Kardashian West was when she first learned the celebrity was helping her case. She said she bought magazines to find out more.
Later, when Kardashian West called with the clemency news, Johnson said she “went into a full-fledged, Pentecostal holy dance.” She said she’d spend the rest of her life thanking Kardashian West and others who helped her.
“Thank you is not big enough,” Johnson said. “I think I have to live it out for her, for my family, for the supporters.”
Johnson said that she plans to advocate for other prisoners who deserve a second chance.
“I plan on continuing to magnify this issue,” Johnson said. “My life is completely intertwined forever with those who have been left behind.”
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