NBC News reports that Trump is seeking a security clearance for son-in-law Jared Kushner, who played an influential role in Trump’s campaign:
Donald Trump has taken the unprecedented step of requesting his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, receive top-secret clearance to join him for his Presidential Daily Briefings, which began Tuesday.
Multiple sources tell NBC News Trump received his first briefing on Tuesday and designated both Kushner and Ret. Gen. Michael Flynn as his staff-level companions for the briefings going forward.
While Flynn has the necessary security clearance, Kushner does not, and it could take weeks — or even longer — for him to receive it.
Meanwhile, Trump has denied the story that he is seeking a top secret clearance for his kids:
I am not trying to get “top level security clearance” for my children. This was a typically false news story.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 16, 2016
Note that he did not say “son-in-law.”
That story about Trump seeking a clearance for the kiddos was first reported by CBS News based on anonymous sources, and then denied by an anonymous official with the transition team. Then the transition team (through an anonymous “top aide”) admitted that the request had been, but blamed an anonymous “low-level staffer” who was supposedly no longer with the team . . . although we don’t know who it was.
If your head is spinning, I don’t blame you.
Kushner is married to Ivanka, who will participate in running Trump’s businesses. Like the kids, he cannot be appointed to official positions due to an anti-nepotism law. (He still could be an unpaid adviser.) The kids have said they won’t be involved in government in any way, but Kushner has not made that promise, that I can tell — despite the fact that he stands to benefit financially if the Trump Organization does well:
Trump is already facing questions about how he will avoid conflicts with his vast business interests. The billionaire has said he plans to fully turn his companies over to his adult children — Ivanka, as well as sons Don Jr. and Eric — but the arrangement he’s described does not appear to legally wall him off from information regarding the operations.
Kushner is directly tied to Trump’s business interests through Ivanka, who oversees domestic and global expansion of the Trump Organization’s real estate interests. And Kushner also has deep business ties of his own, serving as CEO of his family’s New York-based real estate company and publisher of the New York Observer, a Manhattan-based newspaper read largely for its high society and real estate coverage.
It is worth noting that even the NBC report is based on anonymous sources. The only name we have on the record is Trump’s himself.
If Donald Trump denied it happened, you can take that to the bank.
Of course, if the bank is familiar with Trump’s reputation for veracity, they probably won’t accept it.
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