Whistleblower: White House reversed security clearance denials

Cummings' panel has been investigating security clearances issued to senior officials including Kushner, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former White House aide Rob Porter, who dated Trump's communications director Hope Hicks before a DailyMail.com investigation of his ex-wives; spousal abuse allegations.

It also said Ms Newbold told congressional investigators that a second person, referred to as "senior White House Official 2", was the subject of a 14-page memo laying out "multiple disqualifiers" including foreign influence and outside activities.

But Newbold, who works in the Personnel Security Office and handles security clearance determinations for senior White House officials, told MEE that Kushner was not part of her complaint.

First, she alleges that there were 25 clearances given to officials, against the recommendations of her and her colleagues. That clearance was also granted. He has since left the White House for the Defense Department.

The Oversight Committee now plans to authorise subpoenas in order to discover more about the way in which a number of security clearances were issued to a number of individuals, including Kushner.

The whistleblower, White House security adviser Tricia Newbold, raised concerns about the high-level security clearances given to the officials, including three unnamed White House officials.

Instead, she said, the White House retaliated.

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"The interview of Ms Newbold was conducted on a Saturday morning at 8:30am and Republicans on the committee were not informed of the interview's topic or witness until 3:30pm the day before, leaving little to no time to prepare".

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) on Tuesday leveled the Trump administration for granting security clearance to multiple officials who had been flagged for having "serious disqualifying issues".

The freshman lawmaker, who attained fame after defeating the No. 4 House Democrat in a primary upset, said subpoenas would have to be issued to find out what happened "because people in this administration are not cooperating". "Your actions are now preventing the Committee from obtaining the information it needs to fulfill its Constitutional responsibilities".

But on Monday evening Kline's attorney sent a letter to the committee indicating that Kline was willing to appear voluntarily for a deposition, but indicated the scope of his testimony would be limited. He also asked Cummings to postpone taking action on a subpoena.

Flynn was forced out of the White House within weeks after questions were raised about his private discussions with Russia's United States ambassador, as well as other foreign business dealings.

The ranking Republican on the Oversight and Reform Committee, Rep. Jim Jordan of OH, said in a statement that "Cummings' investigation is not about restoring integrity to the security clearance process, it is an excuse to go fishing through the personal files of dedicated public servants". Jordan said one of the 25 people who received a security clearance despite being initially denied one was a General Services Administration custodian.

  • Sonia Alvarado