Nothing makes news faster than an act (or omission) of an elected official. And when that official is on his way out of the Oval Office, amidst one of the most hotly contested Presidential races in recent history, the stories can be even more sensational. We have all undoubtedly seen the stories about President Obama giving his Vice President the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and you may have even read a comment or two on Facebook about the propriety of that act. The 44th President of the United States left office after a string of acts, some of which have been praised and some of which have been criticized. In the end, whether you support the things done by President Obama comes down to your political and personal beliefs. But one thing is for certain, the impact of the Obama administration will likely be felt for years to come.
President Obama made big news shortly before leaving office by commuting the sentence of Chelsea Manning, meaning the sentence is severely cut short. Manning is a former Army intelligence analyst and was serving a 35-year sentence for giving classified information to WikiLeaks. Here is what Obama did for Manning:
● Commutation of a criminal sentence works to shorten the length of the sentence.
● When Obama commuted Chelsea Manning’s 35 year sentence, the end result is that she may be released in early May 2017, rather than decades from now.
● This May anticipated release means that she will only have served 7 years of her sentence, a savings of 28 years!
This issue has the potential to become an ongoing debate. Once the announcement was made, the debate began almost immediately. There are those that believed Manning’s sentence was too harsh for the crime, while others are crying out that compromising national security should be met with the harshest of punishment. In fact, House Speaker Paul Ryan called the commutation “outrageous.” Mr. Ryan believes the precedent this commutation could have is too dangerous, because it sends a message that breaching national security is not taken all that seriously by those highest up in our government.
Regardless of your position, this is an interesting topic with an interesting debate that will provide remain alive for years to come while Chelsea Manning enjoys her freedom.
Call an experienced criminal defense attorney in Key West for help with criminal defense. We offer assistance on a wide range of cases, and can help you. Contact our office today for more information about what to do next.