The soon to be White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer claims Donald Trump is disturbed by President Obama's decision to commute convicted leaker Chelsea Manning's sentence. Sean Spicer said at a news conference on Wednesday, "You have an individual who's convicted of espionage sentenced to 35 years in jail and to see someone who has given away this country's secrets and been convicted of it in military court, it's disappointing". He continued, "And it sends a very troubling message when it comes to the handling of classified information and to the consequences for those that leak information that threatens the safety of our nation."

Trump Feels It was a Double Standard

Spicer went on to say that Trump felt it was a double standard for President Obama to have given clemency to Chelsea Manning while democrats were outraged about the leaked emails during the election by Wikileaks.

President Obama greatly reduced private first class Chelsea Manning's 35 year sentence for leaking over 700,000 classified government documents. Manning has already served almost 7 years and will be released on May 17, 2017. Obama's commutation of Manning's sentenced has been overall celebrated by whistleblowers and those that support them while some politicians in both parties have been critical of Obama's decision. Uncharacteristically, Trump has yet to speak publicly about president Obama's decision himself but other members of his inner circle members have.

Trump's Team on President Obama's Decision

Kelly Anne Conway on Wednesday said on "Fox and Friends" that she felt it was "partisan politics at it's worst." She added, "The way we treat somebody, or the way we look at leaking, really depends on whose ox is being gored." Vice President-elect Mike Pence said on Fox News in an interview which aired Wednesday night, that President Obama's decision to show leniency to Manning was a mistake.

What Does This Mean For Other Whistleblowers under a Trump Presidency?

Sean Spicer was also asked if he wanted to see Julian Assange the Wikileaks founder, who helped leak the classified documents that was given to him by Chelsea Manning, keep his promise to turn himself in to the U.S. government if Manning's sentence was commuted.

Spicer commented that the focus right now should be on the message that was sent and the signal that it sends to other whistleblowers by showing leniency to Manning. Spicer implied by going "easy" on whistleblowers like Manning, others may feel emboldened to also leak information and may not fear the repercussions. Julian Assange has been living in an Ecuadorian embassy after seeking asylum to avoid extradition to Sweden on a sexual assault charge.

Julian Assange claims he was framed because of political reasons and that the charges are completely bogus. He also feared the U.S. could try to extradite him for the leaking of classified government material such as the footage of a U.S. helicopter killing innocent civilians and journalists in Iraq in 2007.

During the campaign Donald Trump praised the leaking of Hillary's emails and of the Democratic National Convention's which exposed the Democratic party's corruption including colluding to make Hillary Clinton the Democratic nominee. This to me shows the true hypocrisy of Donald Trump. When the leaking helps his cause he's all for it but if President Obama commutes the sentence of someone like Manning, he has to make it a partisan issue.

For those whistleblowers hoping Trump will not crack down on them during his presidency it looks like it will depend if that leaked information benefits him or not. It that classified information exposes his corruption too don't expect him being your ally!

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