Ex-CIA spokesman: Trump could set precedent by revoking security clearances

Former CIA communications director Bill Harlow on Monday warned that President TrumpDonald John TrumpComey: Barr is 'sliming his own department' GOP Mueller critic says Flynn contacted him during special counsel probe: report Acting DHS secretary threatened to quit after clashing with Miller: report MORE could be setting a precedent for future administrations by taking away security clearances.

The comments come amid the fallout over the president's revocation of former CIA Director John BrennanJohn Owen BrennanBrennan hits Trump for calling Mueller probe a 'coup': These are 'sociopathic ramblings' Brennan: Imagine if we had a president 'who did not have to obstruct justice' How I learned to love the witch hunt MORE's security clearance.

Harlow said “rules ought to be followed” and clearances should not be removed on a “whim.”

"If this administration takes away the clearances of people for speaking, the next administration could do the same," Harlow told Hill.TV's Krystal Ball and Buck Sexton on "Rising." 

"There are rules and regulations on how you can take away people's clearances if they do something inappropriate. Those rules ought to be followed not just on [a] political whim," he continued. 

Harlow is one of the dozens of former officials from the U.S. intelligence community who signed a letter condemning Trump for revoking Brennan's security clearance last week. 

The White House accused Brennan of using his status as a former government official to make “unfounded and outrageous” charges about the administration. 

Trump is also reviewing access to classified information for several former intelligence officials who have publicly criticized him or have come under attack from the White House.

The former officials include former FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeyComey: Barr is 'sliming his own department' Trump says campaign was 'conclusively spied on,' calls it 'treason' White House refuses House Judiciary's request for documents MORE, former national security adviser Susan Rice and former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe

Brennan said on Sunday that he would be willing to go to court to prevent the president from taking away additional security clearances. 

"I’m going to do whatever I can personally to try to prevent these abuses in the future and if it means going to court, I will do that," Brennan said on NBC's "Meet the Press." 

— Julia Manchester