Quinnipiac released a poll on Wednesday which seems to be ripe for all kinds of parsing:
American voters say 55 – 34 percent that Edward Snowden is a whistle-blower, rather than a traitor, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released today.
In a massive shift in attitudes, voters say 45 – 40 percent the government’s anti-terrorism efforts go too far restricting civil liberties, a reversal from a January 14, 2010, survey by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University when voters said 63 – 25 percent that such activities didn’t go far enough to adequately protect the country.
Almost every party, gender, income, education, age and income group regards Snowden as a whistle-blower rather than a traitor. The lone exception is black voters, with 43 percent calling him a traitor and 42 percent calling him a whistle-blower.
There is a gender gap on counter-terrorism efforts as men say 54 – 34 percent they have gone too far and women say 47 – 36 percent they have not gone far enough. There is little difference among Democrats and Republicans who are about evenly divided. Independent voters say 49 – 36 percent that counter-terrorism measures have gone too far…
“The massive swing in public opinion about civil liberties and governmental anti- terrorism efforts, and the public view that Edward Snowden is more whistle-blower than traitor are the public reaction and apparent shock at the extent to which the government has gone in trying to prevent future terrorist incidents,” said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
“The fact that there is little difference now along party lines about the overall anti- terrorism effort and civil liberties and about Snowden is in itself unusual in a country sharply divided along political lines about almost everything. Moreover, the verdict that Snowden is not a traitor goes against almost the unified view of the nation’s political establishment.” …
Speaking of said unified view, Politico (aka ‘Tiger Beat on the Potomac’, thank you Mr. Pierce) decided Wednesday was the perfect day to counter “Five Stubborn Leak Myths“. Did you know it was not necessarily illegal to leak classified information? Or that not all lekaers are whistleblowers? And right in the middle of the three-page piece:
… The flurry of recent attention has painted the portrait of a Justice Department under Attorney General Eric Holder that has jumped at every opportunity to pursue charges for leaking national security secrets. Not so.
One of the earliest acts of Holder’s Justice Department was to drop the controversial prosecution of two pro-Israel lobbyists indicted for allegedly relaying information received from U.S. government sources to journalists and foreign diplomats…
And the Holder Justice Department also presided over the decision not to prosecute one of the most significant leaks in recent years: the 2005 New York Times revelation that President George W. Bush had ordered warrantless wiretapping to fight terrorism. At least one of the culprits in that leak was no mystery: former DOJ attorney Thomas Tamm admitted to it, and even appeared on the cover of Newsweek just before the Obama team took office.
However, after a lengthy investigation, the Justice Department dropped the case. Former DOJ spokesman Matt Miller said the decision was “briefed up to [Holder], and he agreed.” Ex-prosecutors said it would have been tough to get a jury to convict Tamm for disclosing a program that Holder and Obama had suggested was illegal as then constructed….
Perhaps I overinterpret, but it seems almost as if the quivering social vibrissae of the TBotP crew sense that “Snowden is a traitor, and besides everybody knew all that stuff anyway” is failing to Win the Morning?