WH rejects call to block Clinton from receiving classified briefings

WH rejects call to block Clinton from receiving classified briefings
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The White House on Wednesday brushed aside House Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanFormer Sen. Bob Dole dies at 98 No time for the timid: The dual threats of progressives and Trump Juan Williams: Pelosi shows her power MORE’s (R-Wis.) call to block Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBiden nominates Meg Whitman as ambassador to Kenya Hillary Clinton shares part of her 2016 victory speech for the first time Ben Affleck: Republicans 'want to dodge the consequences for their actions' through gerrymandering MORE from receiving classified intelligence briefings as punishment for the FBI’s probe into her use of a private email server while secretary of State. 

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White House press secretary Josh Earnest said it’s a “longstanding tradition” for major party presidential nominees to receive such briefings — and indicated that practice is almost certain to continue. 

“What the Office of the Director of National Intelligence [DNI] has indicated is that they expect those briefings to move forward after the party conventions,” Earnest said. 
 
“And the expectation that the DNI has is that they'll provide the same information to both candidates,” he added. “We should leave those decisions in the hands of our intelligence professionals and not risk them being sullied by the political debate.”

Earnest noted that he’s given a similar response to questions about presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald TrumpDonald TrumpJury in Jussie Smollett trial begins deliberations Pence says he'll 'evaluate' any requests from Jan. 6 panel Biden's drug overdose strategy pushes treatment for some, prison for others MORE’s fitness to receive classified briefings. 

Ryan said Director of National Intelligence James Clapper should deny Clinton access to classified information once she officially becomes the Democratic presidential nominee at the party’s national convention later this month. 

“I think Clapper should deny Hillary Clinton access to classified information during this campaign given how she so recklessly handled classified information,” Ryan said Wednesday at a news conference. 

The top Republican’s call came after FBI Director James Comey declined Tuesday to recommend criminal charges against Clinton, but excoriated the former secretary of State for being “extremely careless” in handling classified information on her private email server. 

Comey said that a reasonable person of Clinton’s stature should have known that doing so posed major security risks, and added that individuals in similar circumstances have faced security or administrative sanctions.