The Washington Post

Amash insists Snowden ‘told us what we need to know’

(J. Scott Applewhite/AP) (J. Scott Applewhite/AP)

Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) insisted on Sunday that Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who leaked information about a top-secret surveillance program, is a whistleblower instead of a traitor.

“He may be doing things overseas that we would find problematic, that we would find dangerous, we’ll find those facts out over time," Amash said during an interview on Fox News Sunday. "But as far as Congress is concerned, he’s a whistleblower. He told us what we need to know.”

Amash, a strong critic of the NSA program, contested the notion that Congress had adequate knowledge and oversight of the program.

“Members of Congress were not really aware, on the whole, about what these programs were being used for -- the extent to which they were being used,” Amash said. “Members of the intelligence community were told, but members who are rank-and-file members didn’t have the information.”

Josh Hicks covers Maryland politics and government. He previously anchored the Post’s Federal Eye blog, focusing on federal accountability and workforce issues.

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