President Donald Trump said he is considering pardoning Edward Snowden on Saturday after previously calling for him to be executed.
Snowden has been living in Russia after he was hit with criminal charges for leaking classified documents revealing the National Security Agency’s surveillance network.
“There are many, many people — it seems to be a split decision — many people think that he should be somehow be treated differently and other people think he did very bad things,” Trump said. “I’m going to take a very good look at it.”
Trump previously alluded to Snowden’s case in an interview with the New York Post.
“There are a lot of people that think that he is not being treated fairly,” he said. “I mean, I hear that.”
Trump called Snowden a traitor:
Trump previously called Snowden a “traitor” on Twitter and later described him as a “spy who should be executed.”
Snowden was charged with violating the Espionage Act in 2013 and faces a life sentence.
“I guess the DOJ [Department of Justice] is looking to extradite him right now?” Trump said during the Post interview. “It’s certainly something I could look at. Many people are on his side, I will say that. I don’t know him, never met him. But many people are on his side.”
Liz Cheney angry:
Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney and the No. 3 Republican in the House, condemned the idea of pardoning Snowden, though he’s drawn praise from civil liberties advocates for exposing the scope of the government’s surveillance.
“Edward Snowden is a traitor. He is responsible for the largest and most damaging release of classified info in US history. He handed over US secrets to Russian and Chinese intelligence putting our troops and our nation at risk,” Cheney said on Sunday. “Pardoning him would be unconscionable.”