Although Edward Snowden supporters—myself included—may lament the lackluster support received last night at the first Democratic presidential debate on CNN, the fact the candidates discussed Snowden and the NSA programs was a victory for proponents of Snowden’s principles.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said:
“He stole very important information that has unfortunately fallen into the wrong hands, so I don’t think he should be brought home without facing the music.”
Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley told the Las Vegas audience:
“He put a lot of Americans’ lives at risk. Snowden broke the law. Whistleblowers do not run to Russia and try to get protection from Putin.”
The arms of the Democratic candidates were not stretched wide-open to welcome Snowden back to the United States (video via Politico here).
However, Snowden blew the whistle on the NSA and other government programs in order to bring awareness to the issue of government surveillance and privacy in the 21st century. Even though a warm embrace for Snowden would have been music to the ears of many supporters, Snowden’s message is still resonating with America years later.
And that is a sign of success.