Democrats on the House Oversight Committee have begun an investigation into the White House security clearance policy in a move that will likely focus on how Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner got access to classified information.
The committee said on Wednesday that it was launching an “in-depth investigation” into the security clearance process followed by Trump’s transition team after he won the presidential election in 2016.
It said the investigation was a response to “grave breaches of national security at the highest levels” of the Trump administration.
The investigation follows a report last year that more than 130 political appointees working in the Executive Office of the President did not have permanent security clearances, including Kushner and his wife Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter.
Democrats are concerned that Kushner was targeted for manipulation by foreign governments.
In a letter to the White House, Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, who chairs the Oversight Committee said it wanted to know why the White House appeared to have “disregarded established procedures for safeguarding classified information” and to figure out “the extent to which the nation’s most highly guarded secrets were provided to officials who should not have had access to them.”
Kushner was given “top secret” clearance, which does not afford him access to the country’s most heavily guarded intelligence, though he was still tasked with major responsibilities including negotiating a peace deal between Israel and Palestine and reforming the criminal justice system.
Trump’s former chief of staff John Kelly said last year that there had been “shortcomings” in White House security clearance policy and that it must “do better” in the future.
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