The outlook doesn’t seem so good for White House senior adviser Jared Kushner these days. It was recently reported that he has accumulated large amounts of debt since he has been in the White House, not to mention many Russian contacts which raise suspicions. It was also reported:
‘Another issue was Mr. Kushner’s initial omission of any contacts with foreign officials from the form required to obtain a security clearance. He later updated the form several times to include what he has said were more than 100 contacts with foreign officials.’
This issue is getting Kushner into a heated mess that is quickly blowing up in his face. According to The New York Times:
‘Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, is resisting giving up his access to highly classified information, prompting an internal struggle with John F. Kelly, the White House chief of staff, over who should be allowed to see some the nation’s most sensitive secrets, according to White House officials and others briefed on the matter.’
‘A senior administration official with knowledge of Kelly’s thinking said the chief of staff has been frustrated with Kushner’s high level of access without a final clearance and that he was aware the new policies announced Friday could jeopardize Kushner’s ability to carry out his duties in the West Wing. The move puts a “bull’s eye” on Kushner, the official said.’
Kushner has been operating on an interim security clearance due to information found by the FBI on his background check. Kushner is one of dozens of White House officials who are operating on interim clearances. This has also drawn criticism because Rob Porter, the former staff security who resigned earlier in February, was allowed to continue in his job for more than a year regardless of the fact that he had domestic abuse allegations that had been previously disclosed to the FBI.
However, at the end of February, Kushner’s security clearance was officially downgraded from top-secret to secret level. The most likely reasons are due to the fact that he was on an interim security clearance to begin with, meaning that he omitted a lot of significant information from his application. Also, Kushner is under criminal investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Finally, intelligence reports have indicated that foreign governments have been specifically trying to use Kushner’s debt and inexperience to manipulate him to be more favorable to them.
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Carol Leonnig also spoke out about Jared Kushner, speculating that the White House will attempt to force him out before the Friday deadline to give him permanent security clearance. Leonnig went on MSNBC and was asked her thoughts about Kusher. Hayes said to her:
‘I want to read you something Dan Pfeiffer, who worked in the Obama White House said.’
He proceeded to read her this tweet:
Leonnig responded to the tweet, saying:
‘Well, it sounds pretty clever.’
‘I would say right now Sarah Sanders’ comments are not dishonest, they are disgraceful. She’s allowing the opportunity – it seems to me – for the process to work out. For either the clearance to be mysteriously approved, which does not seem likely, or for Jared Kushner to decide to bow out.’
The last comment caught Hayes attention, prompting him to ask this:
‘Wait, you think — wait a second. You think the latter is a possibility?’
‘If you don’t have security clearance and access to top secret information, how could you exactly broker Middle East peace?’
Leonnig went on to mention that Kushner has been reading Mr. Trump’s daily brief even though he does not have the security clearance to do so. Leonnig explained:
‘Keep in mind that this is a particularly bizarre scenario.
‘You have an ongoing investigation, criminal and counter-intelligence investigation of many senior people in the Trump White House because they were, in fact, in the Trump campaign while Russia was meddling with our election.
Watch the interview with Leonnig here:
This is how Twitter responded to Dan Pfeiffer’s tweet:
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