President Donald Trump may announce today a pardon for people accused of various crimes, but the exact list of those who have benefited is not known.
Among them are WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, former 2016 election campaign president Paul Manafort, and former CIA and National Security Agency employee Edward Snowden, according to Axios on Dec. 18.
While President Trump has already pardoned 44 citizens, including former National Security Adviser Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn, more are expected to be announced.
President Trump is also reportedly in favor of a pardon for Oklahoma’s “Tiger King” star, Joseph “Exotic” Maldonado-Passage, according to the Daily Caller.
Julian Assange formally asked for the president’s pardon on Dec. 15, and several others have interceded on his behalf, alluding to the fact that his release would mean support for freedom of speech, according to The Gateway Pundit.
Assange expects to be extradited from the UK to the United States, and if convicted he could face a sentence of up to 175 years, for publishing classified U.S. government material.
Snowden has also advocated for Assange’s pardon by defending the activities he is accused of.
“I very much hope this is true. The case against Assange is based on a legal theory that would criminalize the work of every journalist, both at home and abroad,” Snowden said.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) called on President Trump to intercede for Edward Snowden on Dec. 17, according to Axios.
“It is important to remember that Snowden leaked information about unconstitutional spying and was motivated to do so after watching Obama Director of National Intelligence James Clapper lie about it under oath,” Paul explained.
Snowden never intended to threaten national security.
He added, “Snowden was attempting to expose this type of anti-American behavior from the deep state, not damage our security.”
Paul also accused Obama of trying to cover up the deep state by condemning Snowden for alleged treason.
In his article in The Federalist Paul exalts President Trump’s behavior for not starting any new wars, and considers that granting Snowden a pardon would be in keeping with this attitude.
President Trump “has been far more libertarian and done more on foreign policy and civil liberties than has any recent president” Paul said.