Marine Le Pen, the most prominent French anti-immigrant leader, called on her country to give asylum to Edward Snowden, who revealed the PRISM electronic surveillance program in the United States.
On the website of her National Front Party, Le Pen called on President Francois Hollande "in the name of France, give asylum to this young man, who had the courage … to reveal to humanity a very grave threat to democracy and public liberties."
Last year, LePen ran for president of France on a hard-line platform calling for limiting 80 percent of the nation's immigration, saying her country could not afford social programs for any more immigrants.
Now, Le Pen — who placed third in the initial balloting behind Hollande and then-President Nicolas Sarkozy — has apparently decided France could admit at least one more immigrant with her call for Snowden's asylum.
Were Hollande ever to actually offer the expatriate whistleblower asylum, it would create a major problem for U.S.-French relations. Although France has an extradition treaty with the United States, the French government has historically been reluctant to deport fugitives to America.
The best known case is that of film director Roman Polanski, long wanted on statutory rape charges in Los Angeles, who became untouchable once he fled to France.
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax.
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