White House Waived ‘Dozens’ of Clearance Denials

by Garry Watts April 3, 2019, 0:29
White House Waived ‘Dozens’ of Clearance Denials

A White House whistleblower has claimed that at least 25 officials originally denied security clearance later had their rejections overturned during Donald Trump's presidency.

Those officials - including Ivanka Trump and Kushner - received security clearances despite "disqualifying issues" in their backgrounds, such as concerns about foreign influence, drug use and criminal conduct.

Kushner, who Trump ultimately demanded be granted a permanent top-secret clearance despite concerns of intelligence officials, told Fox host Laura Ingraham that he "can't comment for the White House's process".

Ms Newbold said she chose to speak to the panel after repeated attempts to share her concerns with superiors were ignored, adding that it was her "last hope to really bring the integrity back to our office", according to a committee-released transcript of her interview on Monday.

'Folks are suggesting that we are conducting foreign relations with folks with security clearances via Whats App. After reviewing the report, Attorney General William P. Barr sent a four-page letter to Congress last week, saying Mueller "did not find that the Trump campaign or anyone associated with it conspired or coordinated with Russian Federation in its efforts to influence the 2016 US presidential election".

Mr Cummings said Ms Newbold, a manager in the White House personnel security office, said she was targeted for retaliation after declining to approve applications based on national security protocols.

In his ten years on the Oversight committee, Jordan said he'd "never seen anything like this".

The committee released a letter to the White House counsel last month that reported Abbe Lowell, Kushner's personal attorney, confirmed Kusher used the messaging service WhatsApp to communicate with world leaders.

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The women's final Saturday will match No. 5 Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic against No. 12 Ashleigh Barty of Australia. That's just very tough to swallow'. "It's going to be, I think, a good match", Pliskova said of the looming matchup with Halep.

Jordan complained Cummings scheduled the meeting with her on a Saturday and didn't tell the Republicans until the day before.

Republicans have lashed out at the security clearances investigation, calling it a "partisan attack on the White House".

"I disclosed all of my holdings for the Office of Government Ethics, and what I did with them is they told me what to divest, what to keep, what rules to follow".

Rep. Jim Jordan of OH, the committee's ranking Republican, said in a statement that Cummings' probe is a "partisan attack" and an "excuse to go fishing" through personnel files.

According to Democrats, Newbold said that security clearance applications "were not always adjudicated in the best interest of national security" and that staff denials were frequently overturned by senior officials to grant the employees access to classified information.

A number of those individuals, she told the committee, eventually were denied permanent clearances, including two high-level officials.

"Chairman Cummings solicited this material from Ms. Newbold despite Ms. Newbold's stated reservations about discussing highly personal information about White House officials", they added.

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