Edward Snowden weighs in on ‘faulty’ rampant rumor Trump is set to pardon Julian Assange

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.”

Not long after posting his tweet, Pastor Burns “recanted,” saying his source was “faulty.”

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.”

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:

Tom Tillison

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