Reality Check: Ted Cruz NOW Thinks Edward Snowden is a Traitor?
Senator Ted Cruz says Edward Snowden is a Traitor and should be tried for treason… but that wasn't what he was saying 3 years ago.
Posted by Ben Swann on Thursday, January 21, 2016
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is being accused of flip flopping on a number of issues such as immigration, Syrian refugees and border control, but what about his position on the nation’s most famous whistleblower?
This is a Reality Check you won’t see anywhere else.
“It is now clear that Edward Snowden is a traitor, and he should be tried for treason.”
Those words published by the New York Times from Cruz. Cruz made the statement only days ago after he was hammered by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) for being weak on national security.
Rubio stated, “I never believed Snowden was a good public servant the way that Cruz once said, that he had done a public service for America.” In response to the Rubio comments, Cruz said that Snowden is a traitor and should be tried for treason. Until 1998, that charge carried the death penalty. Today, it carries life imprisonment.
Snowden is the former NSA contractor who revealed to the world the NSA’s spying program that included every email, phone call and text message made and sent in the United States. Snowden’s revelations have had a massive impact on the way Americans view government spying. They have also led to filibusters by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) over the USA Freedom Act and the Patriot Act.
Okay, so Cruz thinks Snowden is a traitor; big deal, so do most Republican candidates. What is interesting here is that in 2013 Cruz wasn’t so clear on his position. When he was asked whether or not Snowden was a traitor, Cruz said this:
“I think it depends on what the contours of the program are and I don’t think we should rush to judgment or jump to conclusions.”
All Cruz said there, was to reserve judgment. However, in 2013, he told The Blaze, “If it is the case that the federal government is seizing millions of personal records about law-abiding citizens, and if it is the case that there are minimal restrictions on accessing or reviewing those records, then I think Mr. Snowden has done a considerable public service by bringing it to light.”
Well, based on that statement, Snowden did a public service because the federal government was and is still seizing millions of personal records about law abiding citizens. Not only that, but federal courts would go on to rule even as recently as 2015, that what the NSA was doing was illegal. In response to that ruling Cruz said this:
“The court’s ruling today confirms what the American public already knew. The National Security Agency’s data collection program went too far in collecting the phone records of Americans.”
So what you need to know is that the reason the American public already knew that was because of Snowden. Since Snowden’s revelations in 2013, one court after another has upheld what he revealed was criminal on the part of the NSA.
As for Cruz, he’s obviously just positioning himself for the sake of politics. The bottom line here is that in 2013 Cruz thought Snowden did a brave thing. Today he thinks he’s a traitor. All because Rubio calls him out? Tough to know what Cruz really believes at all on this issue.
That’s Reality Check. Let’s talk about that on Twitter @BenSwann_