- The Washington Times - Friday, June 14, 2013

Edward Snowden did not have enough high-level access at the National Security Agency to obtain the kind of information that would compromise America’s place among other nations, House Intelligence Committee members said Thursday.

“He was lying,” said Chairman Mike Rogers, Breitbart reported. “He clearly has over-inflated his position, he has over-inflated his access and he’s even over-inflated what the actual technology of the programs would allow one to do. It’s impossible for him to do what he was saying he could do.”

Mr. Rogers’ comments come at a time when some security analysts have expressed concern that Mr. Snowden might trade top-level, and as-yet unreleased, secrets for asylum in China, or another nation on colder terms with the United States.

At the same time he accused Mr. Snowden of lying, Mr. Rogers also admitted he doesn’t know the extent of the information he possesses, Breitbart reported. But his views were clear: Mr. Snowden is a “traitor to the United States of America,” and “should be punished,” Mr. Rogers said, in Breitbart. Democratic colleague Dutch Ruppersberger, who represents parts of Maryland, agreed.

“He’s done tremendous damage to the country where he was born and raised and educated,” Mr. Ruppersberger said, in the Breitbart report.

Mr. Snowden has gone dark in Hong Kong, believed to be seeking asylum.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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