Dem strategist says focus should be on why Kelly was opposed to Kushner security clearance

Democratic strategist Estuardo Rodriguez on Friday said that there should be more interest in why President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump fires intelligence community inspector general who flagged Ukraine whistleblower complaint Trump organization has laid off over 1000 employees due to pandemic: report Trump invokes Defense Production Act to prevent export of surgical masks, gloves MORE's former chief of staff John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE was so opposed to getting Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerOvernight Health Care: CDC recommends face coverings in public | Resistance to social distancing sparks new worries | Controversy over change of national stockpile definition | McConnell signals fourth coronavirus bill Trump spars with reporter over Kushner's 'our stockpile' remark Democratic senators want probe into change of national stockpile description MORE a security clearance. 

"The White House chief of staff expressly opposed the security clearance upgrade for Mr. Kushner," Rodriguez, principal at the Raben Group, told hosts Krystal Ball and Mattie Duppler on Hill.TV's "Rising." 

"For me, it's not even a matter of the president demanded his son-in-law get the clearance, it's there were high-level professional national security advisers in the White House saying this is a bad idea," he continued. 

"If there's real reason to be suspicious, or concerned about his access to high-level documents, then that's the investigation that needs to happen," he said. "I'm not even worried about President Trump demanding his son-in-law [get a security clearance], it's what the reason that he shouldn't have had it in the first place that we need to get into." 

The New York Times reported on Thursday that Trump ordered Kelly last year to obtain a security clearance for his son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner. 

The order came in May after the White House counsel's office issued its final recommendation against Kushner receiving the clearance, according to the Times. 

Kushner's attorney, Abbe Lowell, told the publication that the White House conveyed to Kushner that his security clearance was handled under normal procedures.

White House counselor Kellyanne ConwayKellyanne Elizabeth ConwayBiden fights for attention in coronavirus news cycle Trump says he's open to speaking to Biden about coronavirus The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden offers to talk coronavirus response with Trump MORE on Friday told Fox News that Trump has the “absolute right” to involve himself in the security clearance process for White House staffers. 

— Julia Manchester