Over two years back Edward Snowden made some startling revelations about the electronic spying programs of the National Security Agency. He leaked a treasure trove of documents from the agency which showed the absolute power that the NSA had with regards to electronic surveillance and since then he has periodically leaked more documents to highlight the agency’s programs. He obviously had to leave the United States before setting on this path because he would have been arrested and charged with espionage and much more.
A We The People petition was submitted back then calling on the White House to issue a “full, free and absolute pardon for any crimes he has committed or may have committed related to blowing the whistle on secret NSA surveillance programs.”
Such petitions require 100,000 signatures before the White House has to respond and while this number was reached in 2013 there was no answer until today and it doesn’t bring good news for Edward Snowden who currently lives in Russia.
The White House has finally responded today with a detailed note from Lisa Monaco, the President’s Advisor on Homeland Security and Counterterrorism.
The statement says that instead of constructively addressing these issues Snowden’s dangerous decision to steal and disclose classified information “had severe consequences for the security of our country.” It calls on Snowden to come back to the United States and “be judged by a jury of his peers — not hide behind the cover of an authoritarian regime. Right now, he’s running away from the consequences of his actions.”
Safe to say they’re not going to pardon him.