At least one lawyer friend, who is no fan of Trump, I think agrees with this assessment.
On the question of whether Trump has self-pardoning power, the weight of opinion appears to be with Giuliani—He can, but he shouldn’t. UCal-Berkley law professor and former legal adviser to the Geoge W. Bush administration John Yoo speaks for the vast majority of scholars when he points out the Constitution grants the president virtually unlimited pardon power in Article II of the Constitution. The Constitution says the president can”grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment.” That’s it.
“President Trump can clearly pardon anyone — even himself — subject to the Mueller investigation,” Professor Yoo writes.
Another former DOJ official, Andrew McCarthy, agrees with the legal consensus that a president can pardon himself, and goes even farther. He notes that Trump need not wait to be charged with a crime before issuing a pardon:
“After President Nixon resigned, President Ford pardoned him even though he had not been indicted. President Lincoln mass-pardoned Confederate soldiers and sympathizers, and President Carter mass-pardoned Vietnam draft evaders. Thus, the fact that special counsel Mueller has not, and may never, file criminal charges would not prevent President Trump from issuing pardons,” McCarthy writes.