Trump Says He'll Yank Bruce Ohr's Security Clearance 'Very Quickly'

Sunday, 19 Aug, 2018

"For him to be in the Justice Department and doing what he did, that is a disgrace". That is disqualifying for Mueller.

Former top U.S. intelligence officials sharply rebuked U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday for stripping one-time CIA director John Brennan's security clearance, but Trump defended his move and said he planned at least one more revocation.

A collection of former intelligence officials including CIA directors dating back to the 1980s condemned the move in a letter this week, while the Trump administration has indicated that other former officials are now under review to have their clearances revoked.

The president's comments were a swift departure from the official explanation given by the White House earlier Wednesday that cited the "the risks" posed by Brennan's supposed "erratic conduct and behaviour".

President Donald Trump lashed out at John Brennan in the latest effort to counter criticism of his decision to revoke the former USA spy-in-chief's security clearance. The book contains critical passages about Trump, and Manigault Newman has been releasing audiotapes she surreptitiously recorded of Trump, White House chief of staff John Kelly and other top aides to the President.

Consideration is being given to holding other prepared documents in reserve for similar opportunities in the future, the official said.

Mr Clapper and Mr Brennan were among the Obama administration officials who briefed Mr Trump before his inauguration on evidence of Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

In an opinion piece in The New York Times on August 16, Brennan said Trump's decision to deny him access to classified information was a desperate attempt to end the investigation, which is being led by U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

It was unclear what the argument would be for revoking Ohr's clearance, since Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, while not specifying Ohr's current job, has said he has had no involvement in the Mueller investigation, begun past year. The opposition research firm hired former British spy Christopher Steele during the 2016 presidential campaign to compile the dossier. Molly Hooper, CBSN political contributor and congressional reporter for The Hill, joins CBSN to discuss.

Ohr is the only current official on the White House list of clearances Trump wants to lift. "I could go into conflict after conflict", Trump said. "There's no silence. If anything, I'm giving them a bigger voice", he said. "He is a man of unparalleled integrity, whose honesty and character have never been in question, except by those who don't know him. I suspect I'll be taking it away very quickly", Trump told journalists. All of these former officials have decades of valuable expertise and experience, but they've also spoken critically about the Trump Administration, in moves that have made them unpopular - and the subjects of "frenzied commentary" from the president. They were joined by 60 lower-ranking former Central Intelligence Agency officers who also signed a letter supporting Brennan and warning that Mr. Trump is threatening the security of the country.

Mark Warner of Virginia, plans to introduce a resolution that would prevent the President from arbitrarily revoking security clearances, days after President Donald Trump revoked the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan.

"This action is quite clearly a signal to other former and current officials", the letter says. "And I think it's very sad what they've done to Paul Manafort", Mr. Trump said.