Americans Divided Over Snowden's Guilt

Half of U.S. wants Snowden to be prosecuted for leaking the NSA documents

By on June 17th, 2013 13:59 GMT

Americans have divided opinions regarding Edward Snowden, the NSA whistleblower. 52 percent disapprove of his actions, but 44 percent think he did the right thing to reveal the two surveillance programs run by the NSA.

More than half of those interviewed in a recent survey run by CNN and ORC, don’t think that the truth about the NSA programs needed to come out since they disapprove of Snowden’s actions.

Furthermore, about 54 percent also believe that the U.S. government should attempt to bring Snowden back to the country in order to prosecute him for leaking information, while 42 percent believe he should be left alone.

Another question of the survey regards the Patriot Act, a law that was signed shortly after the terrorist attacks on 9/11. The act weakened restrictions on law enforcement agencies gathering of intelligence within the United States.

Authorities have claimed that the NSA surveillance programs are completely legal and have been built based on the Patriot Act.

“Based on what you have heard or read about the Patriot Act, do you think all of its provisions should be kept, that it needs minor changes, that it needs major changes, or that it needs to be eliminated completely?” the poll asks.

Only 7 percent believe that all provisions need to be kept, while 44 percent demand some minor changes. At the same time, 24 percent demand a major change of the provisions included in the Patriot Act, while 14 percent believe they’d be better off without it.

Furthermore, 62 percent of those who answered the questions of this poll agree that the government has become so large and powerful that it poses an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens.

Only 37 percent still believe that such a stage has not been reached yet.

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