Whistleblower: White House reversed security clearance denials

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In testimony to the committee, Newbold described the Trump White House as far more lax on security issues that previous presidents she had worked for.

Cummings said at the hearing that after he released a letter to White House counsel Pat Cipollone yesterday outlining Newbold's testimony and a memorandum to lawmakers, Kline agreed to testify before the committee, but not on specific issues and only on general policy.

For instance, she was concerned that Kline had approved President Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner's top-secret clearance after it was rejected by two career White House security specialists.

Among them, "foreign influence, conflicts of interest, concerning personal conduct, financial problems, drug use, and criminal conduct".

"In reality, however, Ms. Newbold provided little direct knowledge about the reasons for why Senior White House Official 1's and Senior White House Official 2's security clearances were granted over her recommendations", the GOP response continued.

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.

Cummings said Newbold came forward at great personal risk because she feared Republican retaliation.

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Just this morning, the House Democrats from that Oversight Committee said, we're going to start authorizing subpoenas starting tomorrow, so Tuesday.

"Every day that we go on without getting to the bottom of this matter is a day that we are putting hundreds if not potentially thousands of Americans at risk", Ocasio-Cortez said during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill.

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". "I know that this will not be perceived in favor of my intentions, which is to bring back the integrity of the office". We've invited them to the White House to sit down with government officials here in the administration to discuss that process.

Ingraham asked Kushner if he posed a "grave national security concern to the country", referencing both Newbold's concerns and a line from Cummings memo that calls Newbold's accounts "grave reports".

United States media outlets have widely speculated that President Donald Trump's son-in-law had initially been refused security clearance because of his close friendship with Mohammed bin Salman, the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia.

Attorney General William Barr issued a summary of Mueller's findings to Congress on March 24, saying the special counsel did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired with Russian Federation.

The new round of subpoenas signals increased pressure from Democrats on the Republican Trump White House.

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