Lieu and Beyer cite reports of what they say is inappropriate email use
This is not the first time Trump and Kushner's security clearances have been questioned
Two Democratic lawmakers are calling on the White House to revoke the security clearances of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, citing reports that they say demonstrate a “brazen disregard for ethics and their apparent intention to skirt good governance rules.”
Rep. Ted Lieu of California and Rep. Don Beyer of Virginia sent a letter Thursday to White House counsel Don McGahn raising concerns over myriad issues involving President Donald Trump’s daughter and son-in-law – both whom are also two of his top advisers.
Specifically, Lieu and Beyer cite reports of what they say is inappropriate email use, scrutiny over Kushner’s role in the 2016 campaign as part of the investigation into Russian meddling, and issues with Kushner’s financial disclosure statements.
Politico reported earlier this week that White House accounts sent internal White House documents to an email address shared by Ivanka Trump, Kushner and their household staff.
The couple had previously exchanged emails with White House officials about government business using their personal email addresses. The Politico report revealed that they also used a third email address on their private domain to communicate with White House officials.
“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,” the letter said, adding a request to immediately revoke her security clearance pending an investigation into her actions.
The letter then continues to call for the White House to immediately revoke Kushner’s clearance.
“In light of the recent developments relating to both Mr. Kushner’s email accounts and his financial disclosure statements, we would like to reiterate our request that you immediately revoke his security clearance.”
Last month, the Senate intelligence committee learned that Kushner did not initially reveal the third email address during a closed interview with staffers.
CNN’s Jake Tapper reported last month that the chair and vice chair of the committee were so unhappy that they learned about the existence of his personal email account via news reports that they wrote him a letter via his attorney instructing him to double-check that he has turned over every relevant document to the committee including those from his “‘personal email account described to the news media, as well as all other email accounts, messaging apps, or similar communications channels you may have used, or that may contain information relevant to our inquiry.”
Kushner’s attorney, Abbe Lowell, told CNN, “It is perfectly normal that the committees would want to make sure that they received all pertinent records. We did review this account at the time and there were no responsive or relevant documents there. The committee was so informed when documents were produced and there is no issue here.”
However, there is no indication as of now that Trump or Kushner’s emails contained sensitive or classified information.
CNN has reached out to the White House for comment.
This is not the first time Trump and Kushner’s security clearances have been questioned.
In July, Beyer also assembled a group of more than 20 Democratic members of Congress to send a letter to the FBI requesting the agency look into Ivanka Trump’s security clearance.
In that letter, the Democrats ask that the FBI examine potential discrepancies in Trump’s SF-86 form, which she was required to complete for her clearance.
The 22 lawmakers wrote: ‘As a member of the White House staff and close adviser to the president, (Ivanka) Trump applied for a security clearance, and, as a result, was required to disclose her own foreign contacts as well as those of her spouse and siblings … Since his first filing, Mr. Kushner has had to update his SF-86 multiple times to reflect over 100 meetings or phone calls.”
The letter continued: “We are concerned that Ivanka Trump may have engaged in similar deception.” It did not specify the basis for the concern over Trump’s disclosures other than Kushner’s repeated updates to his own form.
Beyer also led efforts to ask the FBI to suspend Kushner’s clearance in an April 13 letter, citing concerns that he had not disclosed his meetings with Russian officials.
And on June 1, Beyer led more than 50 congressmen in calling for immediate revocation of Kushner’s security clearance.