Former Texas Rep. Ron Paul has become one of the few defenders of Edward Snowden, and the limited government supporter is praising the NSA leaker’s actions as heroic.
Snowden, a 29-year-old defense contractor and former CIA employee, came forward Sunday as the man behind the leaks exposing the NSA’s surveillance programs.
While conceding that Snowden’s actions were “probably illegal,” the two-time Republican presidential candidate said on Tuesday’s The Daily Rundown that Snowden, and others willing to reveal secret government programs were needed to curtail government growth.
“I would say that the bigger the government gets, the bigger threat is the lack of knowing the truth about things,” Paul said. “Individuals who are willing to take a risk and realize the danger of telling the people the truth, they are the real heroes.”
Paul warned that the government that could be in violation of the 4th Amendment protects against unreasonable search and seizures.
“We should question people in authority about breaking the law,” said Paul “What recourse do we have?”
Paul also lambasted his own party for defending Obama in the wake of scrutiny over NSA surveillance, calling it “political foolishness” on the part of Republicans.
“The American people are sick of all this prying,” said Paul. “It doesn’t even make political sense, doesn’t make good moral sense, doesn’t’ make good constitutional sense.”
While Paul agreed that the legality of such surveillance may eventually reach the Supreme Court, he said the ultimate test was educating the public on limited government.
“The biggest issue is acceptance of big government, willing to take care of us from cradle to grave,” said Paul.