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In a press briefing today at the White House, Jay Carney made clear President Obama's desire to open up a national discussion in the wake of Edward Snowden's NSA surveillance leaks:

The President, as you know, believes that this is an important and worthy debate. He has made clear his views on the tradeoffs involved in finding the balance between our need to protect our citizens, protect our country, and our need to retain our values and privacy. But he believes that that’s a discussion that we should engage in.
After Carney spoke, the Obama administration followed through, opening up a national discourse on the issue by charging Snowden with espionage and effectively declaring him an enemy of the state.

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