By Cathy Burke
Awarding journalism's top award to newspapers that used documents from leaker Edward Snowden to expose National Security Agency snooping on Americans' emails and phone calls is a "disgrace," Rep. Peter King said Monday.
In a post on his Twitter account, the New York Republican lawmaker derided The Washington Post and The Guardian, which were both awarded Pulitzer Prizes on Monday, as "Snowden enablers" for coverage based on Snowden's massive classified documents dump.
His tweet blast was first reported by The Hill.
The NSA stories were reported by Barton Gellman of The Post and Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras and Ewan MacAskill of The Guardian, all of whom also shared the Polk Award for national security reporting. Greenwald no longer works for The Guardian, The Hill noted.
King has been a strident critic of the Snowden leaks, telling Newsmax TV earlier this year that it "put American lives at risk." He pointed to a Pentagon report characterizing the confiscation of intelligence secrets as the largest theft of its kind in U.S. history.
"I would certainly hope that people who somehow think that Snowden is a whistleblower or even some kind of hero or patriot will realize the extraordinary damage he's caused to our country," King told Newsmax TV in February, adding: "It's going to put our military at risk. It can cause Americans to lose their lives — and I just wish that more Americans would realize that and not see him as some kind of hero."
The administration in January announced reforms to reign in the NSA's collection of Americans' phone data.
As for Snowden, he's been charged with three offenses in the United States, including espionage, and could face up to 30 years in prison if convicted. He's living in Russia, which granted him asylum for one year.
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