18:54 GMT +315 November 2019
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    Chelsea Manning, right, is interviewed by filmmaker Eugene Jarecki, left, Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, during a forum, in Nantucket, Mass.

    Ex Felon Manning Running for Senate Sparks Talks on How Things Are With Dems

    © AP Photo / Steven Senne
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    News that Chelsea Manning, the transgender former Army private first convicted of collaborating with Wikileaks, is filing to run for a Democratic seat in the US Senate, has outright set Twitter ablaze, with many seeing it as a vivid illustration of what the "blue party" currently looks like.

    Manning, a 30-year-old transgender woman born as Bradley, has been a controversial figure in the social networks ever since being released from a Kansas prison in May 2017. The freed leaker subsequently moved to Maryland.

    After it surfaced that Citizen Manning was filing for the senator election campaign in Maryland, thousands indicated that they would unsubscribe from those who refused to support Manning’s bold aspirations, thus lauding Chelsea's efforts to fight total government secrecy. 

    However, many pro-Trumpers immediately opted for a comparison with the Democratic approach at large, pointing to the fact that Manning’ campaign – that of a "traitor," and, on top of it, a transgender, would be highly indicative of the modern-day life of the Democratic party, which Manning represents.

    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.

    Having been convicted in 2013 of 20 counts for releasing more than 700,000 classified government documents she was initially sentenced to 35 years in prison — the longest sentence ever in a leak case. She was released in May 2017 after serving seven years, when President Obama granted her clemency.

    READ MORE: WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeWhose Move? Assange's Chess Tweet Causes Storm of Conjecture in Twitterverse

    A highly outspoken figure on the internet, some praise Chelsea as a hero. Nevertheless, many others label her a traitor for leaking sensitive data on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the inmates in Guantánamo.

    She has made headlines constantly since her release; for instance, when she posed in a swimsuit for Vogue in August, or detailed her beauty secrets in an article for Yahoo!.  She has also been a columnist on transgender rights and government transparency for The Guardian.


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    election campaign, transgender, senate, parliament, LGBT, Wikileaks, Chelsea Manning, United States
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