There’s plenty of online speculation that President Trump will pardon WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
The talk grew this week after Australian MP George Christensen urged the president to “poke the deep state in the eye” with a pardon for Assange, saying this is “one way that Donald Trump can stand up for free speech.”
And when Edward Snowden weighed in Monday morning, the talk really took off.
Responding to a tweet from Pastor Mark Burns saying the Assange pardon will happen, Snowden said: “I very much hope this is true. The case against Assange is based on a legal theory that would criminalize the work of every journalist, both at home and abroad.”
I very much hope this is true. The case against Assange is based on a legal theory that would criminalize the work of every journalist, both at home and abroad. https://t.co/A667OXoWq7
— Edward Snowden (@Snowden) December 14, 2020
Not long after posting his tweet, Pastor Burns “recanted,” saying his source was “faulty.”
The individual who claimed Trump was planning to pardon Assange—which no evidence thus far suggests is true—has recanted his statement. https://t.co/d8cww861Sq
— Mikael Thalen (@MikaelThalen) December 14, 2020
This development apparently prompted Snowden to delete his tweet, though he did retweet a post from Rep. Justin Amash, the Trump-hating libertarian from Michigan.
Supporting an Assange pardon, the lawmaker said prosecuting him “would endanger journalists everywhere and threaten the freedom of the press.”
His prosecution under the Espionage Act for publishing materials on war abuses and atrocities in Afghanistan and Iraq would endanger journalists everywhere and threaten the freedom of the press.
— Justin Amash (@justinamash) December 14, 2020
Christensen said pardoning Assange, who sits in London’s Belmarsh prison awaiting a decision on his extradition case, is “the right thing to do.”
“Julian Assange has been a target of the Democrats actually,” Christensen told Sky News Australia. “Hillary Clinton hates his guts, obviously for exposing who the real Hillary was.”
If Trump is indeed on his way out, getting a last laugh on “Crooked Hillary,” as he often called Clinton, would be a good way to go.
There was some talk that Snowden commented in the hope of drawing attention to himself as a potential pardon recipient.
Count Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., among those who oppose the idea, though she was ripped online for her stance.
“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. Pardoning him would be unconscionable,” Cheney wrote on Twitter Sunday evening.
In responding to a reporter’s question in August about pardoning Snowden, Trump left the door open.
“It seems to be a split decision. There are many people who think that he should be somehow treated differently and other people think he did very bad things,” he said.
Here’s a sampling of responses to the story from Twitter:
The George Bush groupies are all out telling us how dangerous Assange and Snowden are. LOL!
You know, the same group responsible for thousands and thousands of deaths from unnecessary wars in the Middle East.
Yeah, those guys.
— Catturd ™ (@catturd2) December 14, 2020
President Trump pardoning Julian Assange would be a NICE hit against the Deep State, which has stood in the way of @realDonaldTrump‘s agenda every chance it got.
— Alana Mastrangelo (@ARmastrangelo) December 14, 2020
Please please tweet at @realDonaldTrump about how wonderful it would be for him to pardon Julian Assange.
— Cassandra Fairbanks (@CassandraRules) December 14, 2020
Pardon Assange, Pardon Snowden …and declassify everything……..
Let’s burn this motherfucker to the ground….!!!
— Lisa (@Rockprincess818) December 14, 2020
Pardoning Julian Assange would be a MASSIVE blow to the Deep State that worked overtime to thwart @realDonaldTrump‘s agenda and steal the election.
— Allum Bokhari (@LibertarianBlue) December 14, 2020
I hope you are both freed today! This has to happen
— Marie Fonseca 🔥 (@TheMarieFonseca) December 14, 2020
Trump will anger corrupt American intelligence agencies and military complex with this move.
Then again, they worked against him throughout his presidency, so no love lost.
— О❺ОճО❼ (@zero5zero6zero7) December 14, 2020
The warhawks and many in the establishment aren’t going to like this tweet but it’s time for @realdonaldtrump to pardon @Snowden and @wikileaks Julian Assange.
— Derek Utley (@realDerekUtley) December 14, 2020
Trump should pardon Assange and Snowden just to piss of Liz Cheney.
She’s the worst of the RINOs.
— thebradfordfile™ (@thebradfordfile) December 14, 2020
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