If Hillary Clinton evaded prison time for mishandling highly classified information, surely a U.S. Sailor who took a couple of pictures of a (classified) nuclear submarine could sidestep time as well?
Petty Officer First Class Kristian Saucier, as we remember last August, received a year in prison, 3 years of supervision after release (with 6 months of that being confined at home), is banned from ever owning a firearm, and a $100 fine, for taking photos in areas of an otherwise classified submarine, the USS Alexandria. Saucier’s attorney cited Hillary Clinton’s avoidance of punishment in his case (which some attest actually lessened his sentence), hence the reference to #HillaryforPrison above. Today, FoxNews reported that President Trump has insinuated he may pardon the man who, as his lawyer stated, took the pictures to show his wife and children.
In contrast to the Hillary issue, FoxNews posted Trump’s reasoning.
"They took the kid who wanted some pictures of the submarine,” Trump said in a campaign stop, according to The Washington Post. “That’s an old submarine; they’ve got plenty of pictures, if the enemy wants them, they’ve got plenty of them.”
The Washington Times reported the reasoning of the prosecuting attorneys in reference to citing the Hillary precedent.
“The defendant is grasping at highly imaginative and speculative straws in trying to further draw a comparison to the matter of Sec. Hilary (sic) Clinton based upon virtually no understanding and knowledge of the facts involved, the information at issue, not to mention any issues of intent and knowledge.”
According to the prosecuting attorneys, Saucier’s attorney had no knowledge whatsoever of the facts of the issue; this seems odd as I do remember many of reports outlining the majority of the facts of the case—surely his attorney had access to this open source knowledge. However, this conversation is long outdated, as now Trump may pardon Saucier and bring him home to his wife and 2 year-old daughter.
Although Kristian Saucier’s actions were against the law and I am not concluding he did absolutely nothing wrong, the punishment received was, as it was suspected at the time, a product of a time of intense politics. Referring back to the quote from President Trump above puts the offense into perspective, as well as the fact that the event occurred in 2009. The president further noted to FoxNews that, “I think it’s very unfair in light of what’s happened with other people.”