URL of the original posting site: http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/315107-obama-issues-final-round-of-sentence-commutations
President Obama on Thursday commuted the sentences of 330 inmates on his final full day in office, the White House announced. Obama has set a record with his aggressive use of clemency power. The 1,715 commutations granted during his eight years in office are more than any president in the nation’s history. Of those, 568 were sentenced to life in prison.
This latest round comes just two days after Obama doled out 209 commutations and 64 pardons, including a shorter prison stay for former Army soldier Chelsea Manning. Obama received blowback from Republicans and some Democrats on Capitol Hill over the decision to set Manning’s release for May 17, 2017.
The former army private, who is transgender, received a 35-year sentence for leaking classified information about U.S. national security activities that were later disclosed by WikiLeaks – the longest sentence anyone’s ever received for a leak conviction.
“People say, well why should we change the sentencing rules in criminal justice reform if the president can just do it with a flick of his pen?” Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas) said earlier this week.
– Updated at 3:29 p.m.