Liberal activists booed and heckled House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi after she stated Saturday that former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden broke the law by leaking details of classified surveillance programs.
It all happened at the annual Netroots Nation conference in San Jose, which gives “progressive voices…an online and in-person campus for exchanging ideas and learning how to be more effective in using technology to influence the public debate” its site says.
The Huffington Post describes the scene:
As she spoke about the need to “balance” privacy and security, a man stood and yelled, “it’s not a balance, it makes us less safe.” The man continued to decry “secret courts,” and staffers began to escort him from the room.
Pelosi said it was fine for him to stay, but the man was eventually ejected. On the way out, some members of the audience began to shout at the staffers to “leave him alone.”
The conversation then shifted to Snowden, who on Friday was charged with espionage over his leaking of classified documents to media outlets.
Pelosi said that Snowden “did violate the law in terms of releasing those documents,” a remark that elicited boos and yells throughout the ballroom. One man screamed, “You suck!”
Others yelled “Secrets and lies!” and “No secret courts!” and “Protect the First Amendment!” according to the San Jose Mercury News.
Below is the full video of Pelosi’s remarks. She runs into resistance around the 47-minute mark, but things get hairy at about 50:45 after she calls Snowden a lawbreaker:
And here is a shorter clip of the most contentious section:
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