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Chelsea Manning: Ex-army leaker to run for United States senate

Chelsea Manning: Ex-army leaker to run for United States senate

Though she has yet to comment on the filing, the Washington Post reports that the candidate is the same Manning who, while working as an intelligence analyst in the USA army, leaked a trove of classified documents to WikiLeaks, was sentenced to 35 years in prison for doing so, and had her sentence commuted by president Barack Obama after serving seven years.

Chelsea Manning filed candidacy applications with the Federal Elections Commission on Thursday, the Washington Post reported, thus challenging 74-year-old incumbent Democrat Ben Cardin, who has served two terms and is up for re-election in November. She is running as a Democrat and refers to Maryland as her "home state" on her website.

Cardin, the incumbent senator Manning is challenging, has been a USA senator since 2006. Cardin has an approval rate of 50 percent, according to the latest figures cited by the Baltimore Sun, and will face Manning and three other candidates in the upcoming primary.

Manning was released from a Kansas military prison last year, after serving seven years of the 35-year sentence she was given. Former President Barack Obama granted clemency to Manning during his final days in office in January 2017. Manning did not immediately return CNN's request for comment Saturday.

Known as Bradley Manning at the time of her 2010 arrest, Manning came out as transgender after being sentenced. Since then, she has moved to Maryland, speaks at political events, and writes columns about civil rights.

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President Trump has been critical of Manning, once referring to her as an "ungrateful traitor".

Three years later, Manning was convicted of multiple counts, including violating the Espionage Act, and received a lengthy sentence.

Central Intelligence Agency director Mike Pompeo had scrapped a planned appearance at the Nantucket event over the title for Ms Manning, calling her an "American traitor".

Manning's felony convictions do not appear to bar her from running for Senate. Cardin won reelection in 2012 and is now the ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.