News Bite: President Obama Commutes Chelsea Manning's Sentence

President Obama has announced  he will commute the remainder of Chelsea Manning’s prison sentence.

Instead of being released in 2045, the 29-year-old army intelligence analyst will be freed on May 17 of 2017, after serving four years of her 35-year sentence. A sentence that was by far the longest punishment ever imposed in the US for a conviction stemming from a security leak.

Manning, who revealed she was transgender after being sentenced, has twice attempted suicide while serving her sentence in a male military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. The second time she was in solitary confinement.

Back when she released the documents, Manning, who was then known as Bradley, wrote that she was doing so in the hope that they would incite "worldwide discussion, debates, and reforms", something she later apologized for during her confession during her court marshal hearing.

"I am not asking for a pardon of my conviction," Manning wrote in her application for commutation. "I understand that the various collateral consequences of the court-martial conviction will stay on my record forever. I am merely asking for a first chance to live my life outside the U.S.D.B. as the person I was born to be."

President Obama has given her that chance.

In other Washington news, Donald Trump has continued his belligerent Twitter streak, attacking opinion polls that say he will take office as the most unpopular president in modern history, and claiming reports D.C. will not be packed out for inauguration are false.

"Bikers for Trump" are on their way, apparently.

Bus registrations for Friday are reportedly down at around 400, whereas there have been close to 2,000 sought for the Women's March on Washington on Saturday. The Washington Post reports that 3,000 buses registered for President Obama's record breaking 2009 inauguration.

Two more sleeps and we'll find out.