Back in November, Chelsea Manning asked President Obama to commute her 35-year sentence for leaking classified documents to Wikileaks to time served.
Now that may happen, as Manning is reportedly on Obama’s “short list” for commutation, according to NBC News, and a decision could be made as soon as Wednesday.
In an application released by Manning’s attorneys, she said there was no historical precedent for such an extreme sentence for the leak of secret documents.
Manning, who attempted suicide a number of times citing her treatment behind bars and last year went on a hunger strike for gender reassignment surgery, acknowledged leaking more than 700,000 secret military and State Department documents to Wikileaks but said it was intended to raise public awareness about the impact of war on innocent civilians.
Manning’s aunt said she hoped Obama would consider the former soldier’s troubled upbringing, struggles with gender identity and remorse.
“I would say this is someone who’s never had a chance in life, who is extremely bright, who became extremely emotionally distressed as some point, who made a bad decision, who paid for that bad decision,” Deborah Manning said.
“And it’s time to let her go out and try to make a positive contribution in the world.”
UPDATE. Edward Snowden has asked Obama to pardon Manning.
Mr. President, if you grant only one act of clemency as you exit the White House, please: free Chelsea Manning. You alone can save her life.
— Edward Snowden (@Snowden) January 11, 2017