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Jared Kushner's Security Clearance Comes With a Catch

He hasn't been granted access to nation's top secrets
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 13, 2018 9:46 AM CDT
Jared Kushner listens as President Donald Trump answers questions at a news conference, in Bedminster, NJ, on June 27, 2018.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

(Newser) – In May, it seemed the issue of Jared Kushner's downgraded security clearance had been resolved. Not entirely, the Washington Post is now reporting, citing two people who say Kushner's permanent clearance gives him only "top-secret" status. That means the senior White House adviser, also President Trump's son-in-law, is unable to review the US' most sensitive intelligence, known as "sensitive compartmented information" or SCI, per the Post. The White House security office is able to grant top-secret clearances but only the CIA approves SCI access. It's unclear why it hasn't done so in Kushner's case, though the Post raises the possibility that it's tied to "the ongoing special counsel investigation, which has examined his interactions with foreign officials." Kushner has already sat for two interviews.

Though Trump has the authority to declassify information, Kushner's lack of SCI clearance means his access to the President's Daily Brief is sometimes blocked, per the Post. "I think it would severely hamper his ability to do his job," a security expert says. However, a lawyer for Kushner, refusing to comment on her client's clearance level, says he "has access to all the materials and information he needs" to do his job. That's not the only wrinkle Kushner's facing of late: Per Newsweek, Kushner was at the home in Washington, DC, he shares with wife Ivanka Trump on Wednesday when neighbors turned up to protest the Trump administration's failure to release children separated from their families at the southern border by a Tuesday deadline. "They have shattered civility," one protester said. (Read more Jared Kushner stories.)

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