Dems want answers on White House security clearance process

Dems want answers on White House security clearance process
© Getty Images

Ranking Democrats on three powerful House committees are demanding more information about how the Trump administration handles security clearances amid news that senior White house adviser Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerTrump tries to soothe anxious GOP senators Press: King Donald's goal - no checks, no balances Trump faces criticism over lack of national plan on coronavirus MORE, who's also President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden slams Trump in new ad: 'The death toll is still rising.' 'The president is playing golf' Brazil surpasses Russia with second-highest coronavirus case count in the world Trump slams Sessions: 'You had no courage & ruined many lives' MORE's son-in-law, is still using a temporary clearance.

In a letter Tuesday, Reps. Bennie ThompsonBennie Gordon ThompsonFederal watchdog finds chemical facilities vulnerable to cyberattacks FEMA cancels million mask contract Overnight Health Care: Pence press secretary tests positive for coronavirus | Watchdog recommends ousted vaccine expert be temporarily reinstated | Health care industry loses 1.4 million jobs MORE (D-Miss.), Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) and Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsThe Postal Service collapse that isn't happening House Democrat reintroduces bill to reduce lobbyist influence The Hill's Campaign Report: Amash moves toward Libertarian presidential bid MORE (D-Md.), who sit on the Homeland Security, Judiciary, and Oversight and Government Reform committees, respectively, pressed the Trump administration for information on how the Trump White House handles the security clearance process for its staff.

ADVERTISEMENT

“We are writing to obtain information related to the White House’s interim security clearance process. According to press reports, a year after becoming a White House advisor, Jared Kushner still has access to our most critical national security information pursuant to an interim security clearance," write the three Democrats.

“Mr. Kushner’s case raises serious questions about whether his situation is an isolated one among White House senior staff. It also raises concerns about the clearance adjudication process for White House staff generally," they continue.

"It is unprecedented for fourteen individuals to have access to the highly classified President’s Daily Briefing, let alone a single individual who is unable to obtain security clearance all together.”

The letter goes on to request information from the White House on how many other Trump administration staffers are using temporary clearances.

Kushner is still using a temporary security clearance, according to multiple reports, despite joining the Trump administration last January. Part of the holdup could stem from the top Trump aide's reported failure to disclose multiple contacts with foreign officials on his security filings upon joining the White House.

In November, the White House called Kushner's situation "completely normal" and cited a backlog of requests for security clearances as a reason for the holdup.

Democrats including House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiTrump slams Sessions: 'You had no courage & ruined many lives' Lies, damned lies and the truth about Joe Biden The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Mnuchin: More COVID-19 congressional action ahead MORE (Calif.) have been calling for Kushner's clearance to be revoked since last July.