Will John Brennan and James Comey Both Lose their National Security Clearances Soon?
It has been reported in the news media the President Trump is considering the appropriate methods for revoking the National Security Clearances of former CIA Director John Brennan and former FBI Director James Comey. In addition, others might have their security clearances pulled as well. Those might include:
- Former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe
- Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper
- Former National Security Adviser Susan Rice
- Former CIA Director Michael Hayden
Revoking former administration officials National Security Clearances likely breaks with some precedent.
But, times are different with the Trump administration and the apparent coordinated attacks against President Trump and the Trump administration.
Plus, questions have been raised by some:
- Can and do former officials parlay their former positions and security clearances into network TV jobs?
- Can and do they use their former positions and security clearances to make money attacking the current president?
- Are their security clearances being used as political weapons against a current president?
- Are they at risk of using classified information in their analysis directly or indirectly for political purposes?
Consider John Brennan, who tweeted on July 16th:
Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki rises to & exceeds the threshold of “high crimes & misdemeanors.” It was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump’s comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???
It’s obvious that John Brennan is very partisan in his views.
What is the White House Position?
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders talked about several former officials and that they “politicized and in some cases actually monetized their public service and their security clearances in making baseless accusations of improper contact with Russia.” The White House apparently does not think security clearances should give “inappropriate legitimacy to accusations with zero evidence.”
What is Sen. Rand Paul’s Position?
Sen. Rand Paul has expressed concern on TV and on Twitter that John Brennan needs to have his National Security Clearance revoked. He said he would ask President Trump to pull John Brennan’s National Security Clearance when he meets with the president today (Monday, July 23, 2018).
What Will President Trump Do?
I’m not aware of any reason the president can’t revoked Brennan’s clearance. I expect it will happen in a week or so. If James Comey still has a security clearance, it might be revoked too.
Other former Obama administration officials might lose their security clearances in the near future as well.