The Department of Justice Response to former President Trump's request for a Special Master to review the evidence taken from Mar A Lago:
The filing notes the lengthy effort by the Federal Government to get records including Top Secret Material returned by the former President. Note that:
1. The records should not have been moved from the White House. They belong to America, not the former President.
2. As shown in the filing, the Government made a number of efforts to get the records returned.
3. The President's attorneys filed an affidavit saying that all records had been returned. This was false.
4. A large number of classified documents were illegally taken from the White House. The President asserts that he "had a standing order that any document he took from the White House was automatically declassfied. This is nonsense. It is a long process to declassify information. The President's lawyers must write the rationale for the declassification and inform the agencies involved. They can either concur with the declassification or explain their opposition to the declassification.
All of this must be in writing. After the documents are declassified this must be noted in writing on each page of the document with a notation of when it was declassified and who did it. The documents are taken out of their colored jackets. We will see if the Trump documents followed this procedure and if all the other agencies that hold a copy of this document.
Information is classified as Top Secret if it "reasonably could be expected to cause exceptionally grave damage to the national security." You do not easily declassify such information.
I served for 32 years in the Marines and I had a Top Secret clearance for some of that time. If I or you had taken Top Secret information out of a secure facility and kept it in our homes for 18 months we could and should be sent to jail.
It remains to be seen if the former President can beat this.
The former President was right. I was surprised the DOJ Attorney General appointed by President Trump did not pursue Mrs. Clinton over this. I suppose they were not sure they could prove intent.
"Reality Winner seeks Trump clemency for 'small potatoes' classified data leak"
Reality Winner was jailed for leaking a US report on the Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
She was released in June 2021 on good behavior, after four years of incarceration.
Winner told CBS she is "not a traitor" and had leaked the documents "out of love" for her country.
A former National Security Agency contractor jailed for leaking a document about Russian hacking in the 2016 election has spoken out about her experiences, insisting that she is "not a traitor."
Reality Winner, now 30, was arrested in 2017 and admitted to taking classified intelligence documents that same year.
She was accused of mailing top-secret NSA information to the media outlet The Intercept. The classified document detailed Russian government efforts to hack a Florida-based US voting software supplier.
Speaking to CBS, Winner said she thought something was amiss after watching then President Donald Trump attempt to sow doubt about whether Russia had influenced the 2016 election.
"I just kept thinking, 'My God, somebody needs to step forward and put this right. Somebody,'" Winner told the outlet.
America has a penchant for making traitors celebrities.
On January 5, 2010, Manning downloaded the 400,000 documents that became known as the Iraq War logs. On January 8, she downloaded 91,000 documents from the Afghanistan database, known later as part of the Afghan War logs. He saved the material on CD-RW and smuggled it through security by labeling the CD-RW media "Lady Gaga" and storing it in a Gaga CD case. He was lipsyncing to Lady Gaga music, to make it appear that she was using the classified computer's CD player to listen to music.
"On August 14, Manning apologized to the court: "I am sorry that my actions hurt people. I'm sorry that they hurt the United States. I am sorry for the unintended consequences of my actions. When I made these decisions I believed I was going to help people, not hurt people. ... At the time of my decisions, I was dealing with a lot of issues." 
Manning's offenses carried a maximum sentence of 90 years. The government asked for 60 years as a deterrent to others, while Manning's lawyer asked for no more than 25 years. She was sentenced on August 21 to 35 years in prison, reduction in rank to private (private E-1 or PVT), forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and a dishonorable discharge. She was given credit for 1,293 days of pretrial confinement, including 112 days for her treatment at Quantico, and would have been eligible for parole after serving one-third of the sentence. She was confined at the United States Disciplinary Barracks (USDB) at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas."
Manning subsequently had a sex change operation. "The government didn't pay for hormone therapy nor sexual reassignment surgery until Chelsea Manning sued in order to have it performed. According to a court decision on September 13, 2016, the ruling was in her favor. The military will pay for her hormone therapy, as well as, sexual reassignment surgery. I guess crime does pay. "
Awards and tributes
In 2011, Manning was awarded a "Whistleblowerpreis" by the German Section of the International Association of Lawyers against Nuclear Arms and the Federation of German Scientists. While still in detention in 2011, Graham Nash of Crosby, Stills and Nash released a song, "Almost Gone (The Ballad of Bradley Manning)", in reference to her deteriorated mental state. In 2012, she was awarded "People's Choice Award" awarded by Global Exchange. In 2013, she was awarded the US Peace Prize by the US Peace Memorial Foundation "for conspicuous bravery, at the risk of his own freedom, above and beyond the call of duty." In the same year, she was awarded the Sean MacBride Peace Prize by the International Peace Bureau. In 2014, she was awarded the Sam Adams Award by Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence.
Icelandic and Swedish Pirate Party MPs nominated Manning and fellow whistleblower Edward Snowden for the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize. In 2013, Roots Action launched a petition nominating Manning for the prize that received more than 100,000 supporting signatures.
In May 2015, Anything to Say?, an art installation made of mobile bronze statues of Manning, Edward Snowden, and Julian Assange, was placed at Berlin's Alexanderplatz for a weekend, as a "monument for courage". Germany's Green Party sponsored the sculpture created by Italian sculptor Davide Dormino. Afterwards, the installation was moved and exhibited in different European cities.
In 2015, Paper magazine commissioned artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg to create 2D DNA phenotype portraits of Manning using DNA collected from cheek swabs and hair clippings sent to the artist from the incarcerated soldier. 3D printed versions of the portraits premiered at the World Economic Forum in 2016. In the summer of 2017, Manning (by then released from prison) and Dewey-Hagborg presented their collaboration as part of an exhibition at the Fridman Gallery in New York City.
In September 2017, Manning accepted the EFF Pioneer Award in recognition of her actions as a whistleblower and for her work as an advocate for government transparency and transgender rights. In November, she was named 2017 Newsmaker of the Year by Out, which noted her "whistle-in-the-wind tenacity that belies the trauma she's had to contend with". Later that month, Bitch listed her among the first-ever "Bitch 50" impactful creators, artists, and activists in pop culture, recognizing her as "a leading voice for transgender and healthcare rights". In December, Foreign Policy honored Manning as one of its forty-eight 2017 Global Thinkers "for forcing the United States to question who is a traitor and who is a hero".
In a June 9, 2017, appearance on Good Morning America, her first interview following her release, Manning said she "accepted responsibility" for her actions, and thanked former President Obama for giving her "another chance". She now earns a living through speaking engagements.
Harvard visiting fellowship and rescindment
On September 13, 2017, Manning was named a visiting fellow at Harvard University. Bill Delahunt, acting director of the Harvard Institute of Politics, said: "Broadening the range and depth of opportunity for students to hear from and engage with experts, leaders and policy-shapers is a cornerstone of the Institute of Politics. We welcome the breadth of thought-provoking viewpoints on race, gender, politics and the media." Harvard said Manning would visit for a limited number of events meant to spark campus discussion, and in particular would engage students in discourse on "issues of LGBTQ identity in the military". According to online newspaper PinkNews, this marked "the only LGBT-related fellowship in Harvard history".
The next day Michael Morell, former deputy director and twice acting director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), resigned as a nonresident senior fellow at Harvard's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. "Unfortunately," Morell wrote, "I cannot be part of an organization—The Kennedy School—that honors a convicted felon and leaker of classified information ... the Kennedy School's decision will assist Ms. Manning in her long-standing effort to legitimize the criminal path that she took to prominence, an attempt that may encourage others to leak classified information as well." Later that day, CIA director Mike Pompeo advised the university that he supported Morell's decision, and withdrew from his scheduled public appearance that evening at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government. Calling Manning an "American traitor", Pompeo wrote: "While I have served my country as a soldier in the United States Army and will continue to defend Ms. Manning's right to offer a defense of why she chose this path, I believe it is shameful for Harvard to place its stamp of approval upon her treasonous actions."
On September 15, 2017, Douglas Elmendorf, dean of the Kennedy School, announced that Manning had been invited to spend only a single day at the school and that her title of visiting fellow did not convey a special honor. "We did not intend to honor her in any way," Elmendorf wrote, "or to endorse any of her words or deeds ... However, I now think that designating Chelsea Manning as a Visiting Fellow was a mistake, for which I accept responsibility. ... Therefore, we are withdrawing the invitation to her to serve as a Visiting Fellow—and the perceived honor that it implies to some people—while maintaining the invitation for her to spend a day at the Kennedy School and speak in the Forum. I apologize to her and to the many concerned people from whom I have heard today for not recognizing upfront the full implications of our original invitation." When Elmendorf phoned Manning, a member of her support team challenged him to explain why Harvard was so concerned about the title "visiting fellow". The team was alienated by his response, which they inferred suggested she had nothing to contribute. Manning then hung up on the dean.
On September 17, 2017, during a public appearance at The Nantucket Project in Massachusetts, Manning said: "I'm not ashamed of being disinvited. I view that just as much of an honored distinction as the fellowship itself." She added, "This is a military intelligence and it is a police state in which we can no longer engage in actual political discourse in our institutions."
Denied entry to Canada
On September 22, 2017, Manning was denied entry to Canada from the United States because of her criminal record. According to a letter from Canadian immigration officials, posted online by Manning, she is inadmissible due to being convicted of offenses equivalent to treason in Canada. Manning told Reuters that she had planned to vacation in Montreal and Vancouver, but was stopped at a Quebec border crossing by the Canada Border Services Agency on the evening of September 21 and detained overnight. She said she would retain a Canadian lawyer to challenge the inadmissibility finding before a Canadian tribunal. In October 2021, appearing virtually at an Immigration and Refugee Board hearing to determine her admissibility, Manning called the four-year process to visit Canada "exhausting." When questioned by the adjudicator, Manning did not go into detail about what she leaked because she is bound by a non-disclosure agreement with the U.S. government. The two-day hearing concluded with the adjudicator indicating a final written decision could be expected in 2022.
On April 8, 2022, Canada's Immigration and Refugee Board upheld the government's decision to bar Manning's entry.
Restriction on speech
During an October 8, 2017, appearance at The New Yorker Festival, Manning said she is legally unable to speak about certain details concerning her leaks, confirming a July 2017 post from her verified Twitter account saying "technically, i cant [sic] read, comment on, discuss, or even look at any leaked material, even if it was after 2010".
U.S. Senate candidacy
On January 11, 2018, Manning filed with the Federal Election Commission to run for the U.S. Senate in Maryland. On January 18, Manning filed with the Maryland State Board of Elections to challenge the state's senior senator, two-term incumbent Ben Cardin, as a Democrat in the June 26, 2018, primary election.
On February 1, The Washington Post raised questions about Manning's eligibility to run. "While her case is on appeal," reported The Post, "she is on a technical form of unpaid active duty, putting her political campaign at odds with Department of Defense regulations that prohibit military personnel from seeking public office." Military law expert Eugene R. Fidell of Yale Law School considered it unlikely the Army would take action against her, saying, "Services don't like to create martyrs." On February 2, Manning commented: "This is an issue that's cropped up mostly from the conservative blogosphere, and the campaign and we don't believe this is an issue at all. ... I've been issued a dishonorable discharge, and I'm not sure where the issue lies in this case." She also confirmed that she was still appealing her court-martial sentence.
In mid-February, she said she had no plans to run television ads, explaining, "I can't stand watching campaign ads. We don't need to go to these old-media methods." Commenting on her opponent, 74-year-old incumbent Ben Cardin, she stated, "He's old hat. He's kept this establishment going."
In May, Manning told the Associated Press that she did not, in fact, consider herself a Democrat, but wanted to shake up establishment Democrats who were "caving in" to President Trump. The AP noted that, despite having raised $72,000 during the first quarter (compared to the incumbent's $336,000), "The candidate has barely made an effort at tapping sources of grassroots enthusiasm outside of activism circles. And it's easy to find progressive Democrats who feel her candidacy is just a vehicle to boost her profile." Manning said she would not run as an independent should her primary bid fail.
On June 26, 2018, Manning finished second among eight Democrats vying for their party's U.S. Senate nomination in Maryland's primary election. Manning received 5.8% of the votes. Incumbent Ben Cardin won renomination with 80.4% of the votes cast.
Shortly after the polls closed, Manning posted a statement on her campaign website. "Over the past several months," she wrote, "it has become clear that my experiences have taken an enormous toll on my physical and emotional health. I stepped back from campaigning to prioritize my own well-being." She thanked "the more than one thousand individual donors who generously contributed to our campaign," and "our team of hundreds of volunteers." But, she added, "after spending hours and hours knocking on doors and making phone calls, I'm convinced that the change people truly need goes beyond what our corrupt two-party system is willing to offer."
On January 20, 2018, Manning attended "A Night for Freedom" hosted by far-right social media personality Mike Cernovich at the nightclub FREQ in Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan. The party was billed, in Cernovich's words, as a "gathering of patriots and political dissidents who are bored with mainstream political events", and included right-wing figures such as Gavin McInnes, James O'Keefe, Lucian Wintrich, and Jack Posobiec. According to The Washington Post, Manning's attendance infuriated the far-left. "What followed," The Post reported, "was an overheated Internet tug-of-war between opposite sides of the political spectrum, each accusing the other of co-opting Manning, while her intentions were relentlessly picked apart." Manning afterward stated that she was acting as a double agent, infiltrating the alt-right to gather information and insight about alt-right rally plans.
After first getting in touch with Cassandra Fairbanks—an admirer and writer for the right-wing website The Gateway Pundit—in September 2017, Manning tapped into Fairbanks's close ties to D.C. area alt-right media influencers. In December 2017, Manning participated with Fairbanks, Posobiec, Wintrich, and others in Escape the Room DC, and spent an evening drinking and playing Cards Against Humanity at Wintrich's apartment with him, Fairbanks, and others. "I viewed this as an opportunity to use the celebrity and fame I've gotten since getting out of prison," Manning told The Daily Beast in January 2018, "to gather information and to ultimately find ways in which we who are against the alt-right can undermine the alt-right." She added, "The thing in all this that I've learned is that they don't actually believe the things that they say. I just feel they're opportunists and that they exploit their Twitter followers' fears." Manning acknowledged, however, that these incidents left many of her own supporters feeling betrayed. "People have every right to be confused and hurt by this," she said. "Regardless of good intentions, I leveraged my privilege to gain access to spaces others couldn't dream of entering safely. I never meant to hurt my supporters. No amount of information on the alt-right is worth losing the trust of my supporters."
Tour of Australia and New Zealand
In August 2018, the Government of Australia refused to issue Manning a visa to enter the country, where she was scheduled to make a series of public appearances. The company arranging Manning's speaking tour said it would appeal the decision, taken under s501(1) of the Migration Act, which authorizes a minister to refuse a visa on character grounds. The Department of Home Affairs specified that Manning did not pass the character test because of her "substantial criminal record". On September 2, Manning spoke as scheduled at the Sydney Opera House except that she appeared onscreen live via satellite from Los Angeles.
On August 31, Immigration New Zealand granted Manning special direction to apply for a work visa to enter New Zealand, stating there was "no reason to believe Ms Manning would not comply with the terms and conditions of any visa issued". Due to her previous convictions for espionage and other offenses, Manning is subject to character provisions of the Immigration Act. Manning had plans to tour Auckland and Wellington on September 8 and 9. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern defended the New Zealand Government's decision to allow Manning entry, stating that "we are a nation that allows free speech". By contrast, the center-right National Party had called for Manning to be banned from entering New Zealand on national security grounds due to her espionage and computer fraud convictions.
Career as network security consultant
In August 2021, Forbes reported that Manning had been contracted to conduct an information security audit with NYM Technologies SA, a Switzerland-based for-profit cryptocurrency startup "to send data anonymously around the Internet using the same blockchain technology underlying Bitcoin." Nym's CEO said, "We'd be happy to have her stay on after the audit in whatever form she wants, but right now we need everyone laser-focused on securing our code."
In May 2019, Manning announced that she would be writing a memoir, to be published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux, and stated that it would be primarily a personal narrative that would not relitigate the facts of her case. It is slated to be published in 2022.
Is this a great country, or what?