Asked Whether Snowden’s a Traitor, McDonough Says Wait for the Investigation

by Patrick Brennan

When asked by Fox News’s Chris Wallace this morning whether NSA leaker Edward Snowden was a traitor — as former vice president Dick Cheney labeled him this morning — White House chief of staff Denis McDonough adoped one of the Obama administration’s favorite explanations: “I’m not going to front-run any investigation.” Snowden fled the United States to Hong Kong and, after providing information about classified programs to journalists at the Washington Post and the Guardian, has been speaking to Chinese newspapers about the U.S.’s intelligence operations.

Later in his interview with CBS’s Bob Schieffer, McDonough cited the same explanation when asked about investigations of serious misconduct by the U.S. ambassador to Belgium and other State Department officials, saying, again, that it was “the golden rule” of the Obama administration not to comment on any ongoing investigation.


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