Let the people go: Obama commutes 61 drug, firearm sentences and will spring a dozen more from Gitmo

**Written by Doug Powers

On Wednesday, President Obama commuted the lengthy sentences of dozens of people who had been convicted on drug and firearm felonies. As long as they don’t become nuns and challenge the Affordable Care Act, their legal troubles are over:

President Barack Obama commuted the prison sentences of 61 drug offenders on Wednesday including more than a third serving life sentences, working to give new energy to calls for overhauling the U.S. criminal justice system.All of the inmates are serving time for drug possession, intent to sell or related crimes. Most are nonviolent offenders, although a few were also charged with firearms violations. Obama’s commutation shortens their sentences, with most of the inmates set to be released on July 28.[…]Most are nonviolent offenders, although a few also faced firearms charges. Nabar Criam of Brooklyn, New York, was sentenced to 15 years for possession of crack cocaine with intent to distribute, but received an additional charge for having a gun on hand during a drug trafficking crime.The latest tranche of commutations brings to 248 the total number of inmates whose sentences Obama has commuted — more than the past six presidents combined, the White House said.

Obama treated some people whose sentences he’s commuted to lunch Wednesday:

How many people will Obama pardon on his last day in office? The ceremony will probably be huge and go down in U.S. history as the only one that’s ever been catered.

But lest we think Obama’s opening of prison doors is merely a domestic push, his administration is also going to spring more Gitmo detainees:

The Pentagon reportedly told Congress Wednesday that it is planning to release a dozen Guantanamo detainees to at least two countries.A U.S. official told Reuters the first transfers are expected in the next few days with others to occur in the coming weeks.Pentagon spokesman Commander Gary Ross told Fox News he could not comment on when detainees would be transferred.“The Administration is committed to reducing the detainee population and to closing the detention facility responsibly,” he said in a statement to Fox News.

And if any of them return to the fight John Kerry will remind them that they’re not supposed to be doing that.

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

Posted in: Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, Barack Obama, Gitmo, Politics, Terrorist attacks

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