Trump dares ex-CIA chief to sue over security clearances
President Trump on Monday dared former CIA Director John Brennan to sue over his threat to yank the security clearances of intelligence officials’ because it would create a paper trail that would show how deeply the former spymaster was connected to special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.
“I hope John Brennan, the worst CIA Director in our country’s history, brings a lawsuit. It will then be very easy to get all of his records, texts, emails and documents to show not only the poor job he did, but how he was involved with the Mueller Rigged Witch Hunt,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “He won’t sue!”
In another tweet, Trump suggested the 175 members of the US intelligence community who have signed onto a letter criticizing Trump for pulling Brennan’s security clearances are doing it for selfish reasons.
“Everybody wants to keep their Security Clearance, it’s worth great prestige and big dollars, even board seats, and that is why certain people are coming forward to protect Brennan,” Trump said. “It certainly isn’t because of the good job he did! He is a political ‘hack.’”
Brennan said in an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday, just days after Trump revoked his security clearances, that he was thinking of taking legal action to stop the president from doing the same thing to other intelligence officials.
“If that’s the price we’re going to pay to prevent Donald Trump from doing this against other people, to me it’s a small price to pay,” Brennan said. “So I am going to do whatever I can personally to try to prevent these abuses in the future, and if it means going to court, I will, I will do that.”
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced last Wednesday that Trump had decided take the action against Brennan because he made a “series of unfounded and outrageous allegations – wild outbursts on the internet and television – about this administration.”
The Trump administration also said it was reviewing the clearances of a group of former and current national security officials.
One of those is Bruce Ohr, a Justice Department official who Trump in a tweet suggested should be fired.
“Will Bruce Ohr, whose family received big money for helping to create the phony, dirty and discredited Dossier, ever be fired from the Jeff Sessions ‘Justice’ Department? A total joke!,” he said.
Ohr was in contact with Christopher Steele, a former British intelligence agent, who compiled a dossier that contained unsubstantiated but salacious claims about Trump.
His wife, Nellie, worked at Fusion GPS, the company that paid Steele to put together the dossier.
Some Republicans and allies of the president claim that the Justice Department used the information in the dossier to launch an investigation into the Trump campaign’s alleged connections with the Russians.
Brennan, who served as head of the CIA from 2013 to 2017, has been a frequent critic of Trump.
He called Trump’s behavior in Helsinki last month when he failed to call out Russian President Vladimir Putin for meddling in the 2016 election “treasonous.”
By Monday, 175 members of the US intelligence community – spanning both Democratic and Republican administrations – have signed onto a letter criticizing Trump for pulling Brennan’s security clearances.
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