Obama may grant clemency to Chelsea Manning
There’s still hope that President Obama might commute Chelsea Manning’s sentence as one of his final acts before leaving office.
NBC News reported “a decision could come as soon as” Wednesday on Manning’s freedom under this administration, where she’s currently serving 35 years after being prosecuted for leaking classified and/or sensitive material to WikiLeaks. Manning, who has tried to commit suicide twice and went on a hunger strike in 2016 to protest the disregard for her transgender identity, has already served seven years of her sentence at the maximum-security prison at Fort Leavenworth.
Manning’s defense lawyer David Coombs appeared on NBC to discuss her case. “After this case, I had to tell Chelsea, ‘I’ve represented murderers. I’ve represented rapists. I’ve represented child molesters. And none of them received 35 years. None of them,’” he said. The rare interview is part of a bid to convince Obama to give clemency to Manning before President-elect Trump takes office.
NBC’s sources in the intelligence community said that Manning’s sentencing seemed “excessive” in hindsight, especially given that the information itself turned out to not have as much of an impact as they anticipated. NBC also posted the audio of Manning’s apology to the court, which has never before been heard by the general public.
[Source: NBC News]