Trump office cleared 25 officials originally disqualified over security fears, whistleblower claims

FBI Whistleblower: Kushner was one of 25 Trump Officials to Have Security Clearance Overridden

Ocasio-Cortez's comments came as lawmakers were debating the need for additional subpoenas after Tricia Newbold, an 18-year government employee who oversees the issuance of clearances for some senior White House aides, said she compiled a list of at least 25 officials who were initially denied security clearances last year due to their backgrounds.

Newbold said that in addition to the two current senior officials, security clearances were also granted to contractors and other individuals in the executive office of the president, despite their having "a wide range of serious disqualifying issues involving foreign influence, conflicts of interest, concerning personal conduct, financial problems, drug use, and criminal conduct".

Ms Newbold made the allegations during an interview with the Democratic-led House oversight and reform committee last month, according to a letter released by Elijah Cummings, its chairman, yesterday.

"I would not be doing a service to myself, my country, or my children if I sat back knowing that the issues that we have could impact national security", Cummings's letter quoted Newbold as telling his committee.

"But what I can say is that over the last few years that I've been here, I've been accused of all different types of things, and all of those things have turned out to be false", he said. I mean, really. What is next?

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.

MEE asked Cummings' office on Monday whether Newbold was specifically asked about Kushner during the 23 March interview and how she responded, but did not receive a response by time of publication.

Two sources familiar with the information obtained by the Oversight Committee said two of those three senior officials were Ms Trump and her husband Mr Kushner.

Jordan complained Cummings scheduled the meeting with her on a Saturday and didn't tell the Republicans until the day before. Staff also recommended denying a clearance to a second "very senior" official based on "foreign influence and outside activities", but Newbold said Kline told her "do not touch" the case.

Newbold said she raised her concerns up the chain of command in the White House to no avail. This, she said, prevents the White House from being able to assess whether applicants "could be susceptible to blackmail, depending on their debts".

The Maryland Democrat said Kline representatives had told him that "they might have him come in but that he would be limited to only talking about the process in general and would not talk about what happened in these cases". Carl Kline, director of Trump's personnel security office, was said to have overruled these concerns.

The denials by the career employees were overturned, she said, by more-senior officials who did not follow the procedures created to mitigate security risks. That clearance was also granted.

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