By Rebecca Savransky, May 30, 2016, The Hill
Eric Holder's thaw on NSA leaker Edward Snowden continued this week, with the former attorney general now saying the former government contractor performed a valuable "public service."
CNN reported Monday that Holder still says Snowden needs to face consequences for illegally leaking classified intelligence documents, but he told a fellow Obama administration alumnus that Snowden helped facilitate necessary changes.
"We can certainly argue about the way in which Snowden did what he did, but I think that he actually performed a public service by raising the debate that we engaged in and by the changes that we made," Holder told David Axelrod on "The Axe Files," a podcast produced by CNN and the University of Chicago Institute of Politics.
"Now I would say that doing what he did — and the way he did it — was inappropriate and illegal."