WNYC News: Congressmen Demand White House Revoke Ivanka Trump Security Clearance

October 5, 2017
In The News

Two members of Congress are renewing their call for Ivanka Trump's White House security clearance to be suspended after a joint WNYC-ProPublica-New Yorker investigation showed that she and her brother, Donald Trump Jr., were the focus of a criminal probe.

The news outlets reported that Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. dropped the investigation into potential real-estate fraud connected with the Trump SoHo hotel after meeting with a Trump lawyer who was also a contributor to the Vance campaign. No-one was ever charged with a crime.

Congressmen Don Beyer (D-Virginia) and Ted Lieu (D-California) wrote a letter to White House Counsel Donald McGahn, saying that news of the Trump SoHo investigation, taken together with other recent news reports, convinced them that Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner, who are both White House advisors, should not have access to sensitive information.

The congressman also cited reports that Kushner and Trump recently missed a deadline to file financial disclosures, and have both used private email accounts for official government business.

“These new revelations, along with the ongoing White House probe of Ms. Trump’s private email use, have compromised Ms. Trump’s integrity and credibility. We are requesting that the White House immediately revoke her security clearance pending an investigation into her actions,” Lieu and Beyer wrote in their letter, dated October 4th.

Lindsay Walters, a White House spokeswoman, wrote a one-sentence response to a request for comment: “We do not comment on security clearances.”

Representative Beyer himself underwent a security clearance when he became an Obama transition official in 2008, and again when President Obama appointed him ambassador to Switzerland. He said it seemed likely that a careful security review would have discovered the D.A.’s investigation of Ms. Trump — if it was known to others.

“I am certain that if I had been investigated for a crime and it was public knowledge, that they would have picked that up from the many neighbors, friends. They talked to my first wife, for example. They were very thorough,” Beyer said.

In April, Beyer, Lieu, and other Democratic lawmakers called for Jared Kushner’s clearance to be suspended.