After whistle-blower Edward Snowden revealed his identity Sunday, someone from Rochester, N.Y., created an online White House petition calling for his pardon.
“Edward Snowden is a national hero and should be immediately issued a a (sic) 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,” the petition at the White House’s “We the People” website reads.
Snowden, 29, has not been charged with a crime at this juncture, but at least two lawmakers have already called for the prosecution of the person(s) responsible for the leak, The Daily Caller reported.
“I absolutely think they should be prosecuted,” said House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein has said that she agrees with Rogers.
The petition needs 100,000 signatures by July 9 in order to require the White House to issue a response. The petition currently has almost 8,500 signatures.
When Snowden was asked about whether he believed what he did was a crime, this was his response:
“We have seen enough criminality on the part of government,” Snowden responded. “It is hypocritical to make this allegation against me. They have narrowed the public sphere of influence.”