Categories for National Security

27,137. 8/2/2019

CONGRESS/INTELLIGENCE/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Trump on Friday [8-2-19] abruptly dropped his plan to nominate Representative John Ratcliffe, Republican of Texas, as the nation’s top intelligence official after questions by Republicans and Democrats about his qualifications and concern over whether he had exaggerated his résumé. Mr. Ratcliffe, a vocal supporter of Mr. Trump, had come under intense scrutiny since the president declared on Sunday on Twitter that the lawmaker was his pick to succeed Dan Coats, who is stepping down as director of national intelligence on Aug. 15. The selection generated scant enthusiasm among senators of both parties, who would have decided whether to confirm him. Mr. Trump, in his post announcing that Mr. Ratcliffe would not be his nominee after all, spoke bitterly of the attention that Mr. Ratcliffe’s overstated claims about his experience as a federal prosecutor quickly received from the news media.”

Charlie Savage, Julian E. Barnes and Annie Karni, “Trump Drops Plans to Nominate John Ratcliffe as Director of National Intelligence,” The New York Times online, August 2, 2019

27,046. 7/30/2019

ELECTION/NATIONAL SECURITY/RUSSIA/TRUMP PEOPLE: “RT @senatemajldr: I spoke on the Senate floor today about my extensive record of standing up to Russia, election security, and why we won’t…”

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, July 30, 2019 11:26 am

27,037. 7/30/2019

INTELLIGENCE/NATIONAL SECURITY/NOMINATIONS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT/TRUMP PEOPLE: “Aides to the congressman chosen by President Trump to lead the nation’s intelligence agencies were forced on Tuesday [7-30-19] to clarify his claims that he had won terrorism convictions as a federal prosecutor, as his background came under new scrutiny. Mr. Trump’s pick, Representative John Ratcliffe, Republican of Texas, had said on his House website and in campaign material that he had tried suspects accused of funneling money to the Hamas terrorist group. But instead, an aide said, Mr. Ratcliffe had investigated side issues related to an initial mistrial, and did not prosecute the case either in that proceeding or in a successful second trial. The questions about Mr. Ratcliffe’s résumé came amid broader concerns from Democrats and even some Republicans about the depth of his experience and his partisan outspokenness.”

Julian E. Barnes and Nicholas Fandos, “Trump’s Pick for Top Intelligence Post Overstated Parts of His Biography,” The New York Times online, July 30, 2019

26,997. 7/29/2019

INTELLIGENCE/NATIONAL SECURITY/NOMINATIONS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Republicans hesitated on Monday [7-29-19] to embrace President Trump’s choice for the director of national intelligence, and some privately expressed doubts about his potential confirmation, echoing concerns of experts and Democrats that he was too inexperienced and too partisan. Mr. Trump’s pick, Representative John Ratcliffe of Texas, could face an uphill battle, Senate Republicans said in private conversations. Several said they wanted to keep the intelligence post apolitical, and Mr. Ratcliffe will need to show he can move beyond the die-hard conservative persona that has made him a star in the House and on Fox News but less well known among senators who will decide whether to confirm him…The cool reception from members of the president’s own party reflected the split at hand: For what is supposed to be perhaps the most nonpartisan job in Washington, Mr. Trump selected one of the capital’s fiercest political warriors.”

Julian E. Barnes, Nicholas Fandos and Adam Goldman, “Republican Senators Are Cool to Trump’s Choice for Top Intelligence Post,” The New York Times online, July 29, 2019

26,937. 7/26/2019

CHINA/NATIONAL SECURITY/TECHNOLOGY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “There may or may not be National Security concerns with regard to Google and their relationship with China. If there is a problem, we will find out about it. I sincerely hope there is not!!!” 

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, July 26, 2019 9:02 am

26,926. 7/25/2019

CYBERWAR/INTELLIGENCE/NATIONAL SECURITY/RUSSIA/SENATE/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “The Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday [7-25-19] released a wide-ranging report that detailed Russia’s attempts to hack US election infrastructure during the 2016 election, urging states and the federal government to do more to prevent election cyberattacks in the future. The report included a host of recommendations to both the federal and state governments, including the use of paper ballots to provide a paper trail for votes and better communication between state governments and the Department of Homeland Security. Thursday’s release comes as Senate Democrats continue to slam their Republican colleagues and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for preventing a vote on several pieces of election security legislation. Republicans in the Senate have twice in 24 hours blocked the advancement of bills aimed at strengthening election security just hours after former special counsel Robert Mueller warned of the continued threat that foreign powers interfering in US elections.”

Jeremy Herb, Zachary Cohen and Kevin Collier, “Senate report warns of ongoing election threat as Republicans block security bills,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, July 25, 2019 7:15 pm

26,840. 7/23/2019

CAMPAIGN/CRIME/LEGAL/LOBBYING/MICHAEL FLYNN/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP PEOPLE: “A federal jury on Tuesday [7-22-19] convicted Bijan Rafiekian, a former business partner of Michael Flynn, on a pair of foreign-agent felony charges stemming from work the two men did for Turkish interests during the final months of the Trump presidential campaign in 2016. The verdicts, returned by jurors in Alexandria, Va., after a weeklong trial and only about four hours of deliberation, amount to a belated courtroom victory for special counsel Robert Mueller, who investigated the $600,000 lobbying and public relations contract at the heart of the case and then handed the matter off to other federal prosecutors after Flynn’s guilty plea to a false-statement charge in 2017. Rafiekian, 67, faces up to 15 years in prison on the two felony counts against him: acting as an unregistered foreign agent in the U.S., and conspiracy to violate that law as well as to submit false statements to the Justice Department in a foreign-agent filing. Defendants are typically sentenced in accord with federal sentencing guidelines that result in far less than the maximum.”

Josh Gerstein, “Trump transition adviser convicted on foreign-agent charges,” Politico, July 23, 2019 6:11 pm

26,175. 7/1/2019

NATIONAL SECURITY/NORTH KOREA/NUCLEAR/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “As President Trump reveled in his historic weekend stroll into North Korea, administration officials were sharply at odds on Monday [7-1-19] over what demands to make of Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader, while preparing to restart negotiations on a nuclear deal. Pushing an internal debate into the open, John R. Bolton, the national security adviser and the most prominent hawk in the administration, reacted angrily to a report in The New York Times about the possibility of a deal to effectively freeze North Korea’s nuclear activity in return for American concessions. Some officials are considering a freeze as a first step toward a more comprehensive agreement for Mr. Kim to give up his entire nuclear program. Mr. Bolton has long insisted that the North Koreans dismantle their nuclear program and give up their entire arsenal of warheads before getting any rewards.”

Edward Wong, “Trump Officials Are Split Over Approach to North Korea Talks,” The New York Times online, July 1, 2019

26,147. 6/29/2019

AGRICULTURE/CHINA/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “….amounts of agricultural product from our great Farmers. At the request of our High Tech companies, and President Xi, I agreed to allow Chinese company Huawei to buy product from them which will not impact our National Security. Importantly, we have opened up negotiations…”

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, June 29, 2019 5:32 pm

26,095. 6/27/2019

IRAN/NATIONAL SECURITY/NUCLEAR/OBAMA/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: ”For President Donald Trump, it’s déjà vu all over again on Iran. Iran’s expected breach on Thursday [6-27-19] of the uranium stockpile limits set by the 2015 nuclear deal is reviving a fierce debate within the Trump administration and on Capitol Hill about just how hard Trump should go to undermine the agreement. Even though Trump pulled out from the deal struck by President Barack Obama, an important portion of the agreement was left intact that allows work on Iran’s civil nuclear program and facilitates international projects to encourage its advancement. The State Department has issued waivers to allow those projects to continue and doing away with them would almost certainly blow up the deal entirely. That’s precisely the goal that Trump administration hawks, led by national security adviser John Bolton, have been pursuing — thus far, with only limited success. The next inflection point in the battle is likely to come Thursday, when Iran has said it will surpass the enrichment levels established by the deal.”

Eliana Johnson and Burgess Everett, “Trump’s hawks ramp up campaign to shred last part of Iran nuclear deal,” Politico, June 27, 2019 5:02 am

26,009. 6/25/2019

IRAN/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT/TRUMP PEOPLE/WAR: “Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif accused U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton of plotting for war against Iran in a tweet on Tuesday [6-25-19]. ‘Wanna know why those with proven record of detesting diplomacy are suddenly interested in talks? Just read @AmbJohnBolton’s 2017 recipe for destroying the #JCPOA,’ Zarif wrote, adding a link to a 2017 article written by Bolton in the National Review. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, is the landmark 2015 nuclear deal Iran signed with world powers. ‘Iran never left the negotiation table. #B_Team dragged the U.S. out, while plotting for war,’ Zarif added. Zarif has in the past said that a ‘B-team’ including Bolton, an ardent Iran hawk, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, could goad Trump into a conflict with Tehran.”

Babak Dehghanpisheh, “Iran foreign minister accuses U.S.’s Bolton of plotting for war,” Reuters, June 25, 2019 11:37 am

25,907. 6/20/2019

IRAN/MILITARY/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT/TRUMP PEOPLE: “President Donald Trump and his national security adviser, John Bolton, are engaged in an ongoing debate about how to handle Iran, a senior White House official told CNN. Trump moved to ease tensions with Iran on Thursday morning after Tehran downed a US drone near the Persian Gulf. In doing so, he struck a starkly different tone on Iran from Bolton and other senior security aides. After months of escalating steps by Iran and the US, Trump said Iran’s attack on the drone was probably an unintentional ‘mistake.’ The President’s tempered response stands in stark contrast to harsh public warnings from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and particularly the views of Bolton, who has publicly and repeatedly called for regime change in Tehran in the past. The senior White House official said that in the Iran debate between Trump and Bolton, officials such as Pompeo, Vice President Mike Pence and incoming acting Secretary of Defense Mark Esper play the role of ‘swing votes.”

Alex Marquardt, Michelle Kosinski, Zachary Cohen and Nicole Gaouette, “Trump and Bolton debate how to deal with Iran as Pompeo ‘triangulates,’ officials say,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, June 20, 2019 7:56 pm

25,496. 6/7/2019

ELECTION/LEGISLATION/MITCH MCCONNELL/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP PEOPLE: “A raft of legislation intended to better secure United States election systems after what the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, called a ‘sweeping and systematic’ Russian attack in 2016 is running into a one-man roadblock in the form of the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. The bills include a Democratic measure that would send more than $1 billion to state and local governments to tighten election security, but would also demand a national strategy to protect American democratic institutions against cyberattacks and require that states spend federal funds only on federally certified ‘election infrastructure vendors.’ A bipartisan measure in both chambers would require internet companies like Facebook to disclose the purchasers of political ads…But even bipartisan coalitions have begun to crumble in the face of the majority leader’s blockade. Mr. McConnell, long the Senate’s leading ideological opponent to federal regulation of elections, has told colleagues in recent months that he has no plans to consider stand-alone legislation on the matter this term, despite clamoring from members of his own conference and the growing pressure from Democrats who also sense a political advantage in trying to make the Republican response to Russia’s election attack look anemic.”

Nicholas Fandos, “New Election Security Bills Face a One-Man Roadblock: Mitch McConnell,” The New York Times online, June 7, 2019

25,460. 6/6/2019

MICHAEL FLYNN/NATIONAL SECURITY/ROBERT MUELLER/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Prosecutors released audio on Thursday [6-6-19] of a voice mail message that President Trump’s personal lawyer left for a lawyer for Michael T. Flynn, the former national security adviser, shortly after Mr. Flynn agreed in 2017 to cooperate with the special counsel’s investigation. The message and its tone offer new insight into how Mr. Trump’s lawyer at the time, John Dowd, broached the prospect of  a pardon for Mr. Flynn. The call occurred in November 2017, shortly after Mr. Flynn’s lawyers withdrew from a joint defense agreement with the president’s lawyers. A transcript of Mr. Dowd’s call with Robert K. Kelner, Mr. Flynn’s lawyer, was included in the Mueller report, released in April. But the audio had remained secret until Thursday, when prosecutors turned it over in response to an order from a federal judge who is weighing how to sentence Mr. Flynn. Mr. Flynn pleaded guilty in December 2017 to making false statements to F.B.I. agents about his contacts with the Russian ambassador to the United States.”

Michael S. Schmidt, “Listen to Trump’s Lawyer Make Appeal After Flynn Agreed to Cooperate With Mueller,” The New York Times online, June 6, 2019

25,361. 5/29/2019

INTELLIGENCE/IRAN/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “John R. Bolton, President Trump’s national security adviser, on Wednesday [5-29-19] accused Iran of playing a key role in recent attacks on ships off the coast of the United Arab Emirates, the latest instance in which he has articulated a more hawkish view than his boss toward Iran. Ratcheting up his criticism of Tehran, Mr. Bolton tied the attacks this month on four oil vessels at the mouth of the Persian Gulf to ‘naval mines almost certainly from Iran,’ apparently without presenting evidence. President Trump withdrew last year from the 2015 nuclear accord that world powers struck with Iran and then reimposed broad sanctions, but in his comments to journalists during a visit to the emirates, reported by Reuters and The Associated Press, Mr. Bolton said there was ‘no reason’ for Iran to breach the nuclear deal unless it were actually seeking atomic weapons…Iran quickly dismissed the accusations, with a Foreign Ministry spokesman describing them as ‘ridiculous’ and calling Mr. Bolton a warmonger, the state-run Press TV  reported. Mr. Bolton is not the first prominent American official to point the finger at Iran.”

Gerry Mullany, “Bolton Says Iran Is Likely Responsible for Oil Tanker Attacks,” The New York Times online, May 29, 2019

25,171. 5/21/2019

CONGRESS/DEMS/IRAN/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Top American national security officials sought to convince a divided Congress on Tuesday [5-21-19] about the seriousness of new threats from Iran as they defended intelligence that has prompted military deployments aimed at deterring attacks by Tehran. Democrats emerged from the classified briefings on Capitol Hill with sharp questions about whose actions ultimately led to the recent escalation: Tehran’s or the Trump administration’s. Late last week, Iran removed some missiles it had stationed on small boats in its territorial waters — a step American officials said was a sign that Iran was seeking to ease tensions. On Tuesday, American officials said Iran had threatened to target those missiles at Saudi Arabia’s oil infrastructure to drive up oil prices and disrupt international trade. Recent intelligence has indicated that Iran was considering such attacks in response to tough American sanctions against Iran’s oil sector and the administration’s decision to designate the paramilitary arm of Iran’s government a terrorist organization, according to two officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the analysis publicly.”

Julian E. Barnes, Catie Edmondson and Emily Cochrane, “U.S. Officials Work to Convince Divided Congress of Iran Threat,” The New York Times online, May 21, 2019

25,073. 5/17/2019

AUTO INDUSTRY/EU/JAPAN/NATIONAL SECURITY/TARIFFS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump on Friday [5-17-19] delayed by six months a series of tariffs on foreign cars from Europe and Japan, pushing back the aggressive move to give negotiators more time to reach broad trade agreements. Trump administration officials have determined that auto imports ‘threaten to impair the national security of the United States,’ according to the order, a finding that the White House used to gain leverage in ongoing trade talks with Europe and Japan. The president faced a Saturday [5-18-19] deadline to decide whether to put those tariffs into place. Trump was threatening to raise foreign auto tariffs as high as 25% under the same national security provisions he used to raise barriers on foreign steel and aluminum. Under the president’s order, the decision would be put off 180 days…Trump has been relying on an obscure provision of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 that empowers him to impose tariffs based on Commerce Department findings that imports of certain goods threaten security.” 

John Fritze, “Trump delays tariffs on auto imports, gives negotiators six months to find deal with EU, Japan,” USA Today, May 17, 2019 6:00 pm

25,011. 5/15/2019

CHINA/NATIONAL SECURITY/TECHNOLOGY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Trump moved on Wednesday [5-15-19] to ban American telecommunications firms from installing foreign-made equipment that could pose a threat to national security, White House officials said, stepping up a battle against China by effectively barring sales by Huawei, the country’s leading networking company. Mr. Trump issued an executive order instructing the commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross, to ban transactions ‘posing an unacceptable risk’ but did not single out any nation or company. The action has long been expected and is the latest salvo in the administration’s economic and security battle with China. It is also the most extreme move in the Trump administration’s fight against China’s tech sector. The executive order was ‘agnostic,’ White House officials said in a call with reporters, declining to single out China as the focus. ‘This administration will do what it takes to keep America safe and prosperous and to protect America from foreign adversaries’ targeting vulnerabilities in American communications infrastructure, the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said in a statement.”

Cecilia Kang and David E. Sanger, “Huawei Is a Target as Trump Moves to Ban Foreign Telecom Gear,” The New York Times online, May 15, 2019

24,761. 5/9/2019

IRAN/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT/TRUMP PEOPLE/VENEZUELA: “U.S. President Donald Trump, facing the possibility of military confrontations with both Iran and Venezuela, said on Thursday [5-9-19] that he sometimes serves as a counterbalance to his hard-charging national security adviser, John Bolton. Bolton has been a key player in current U.S. standoffs with Iran and Venezuela, both instances in which the United States has not ruled out the use of force to protect American interests. A statement announcing a U.S. naval force to the Gulf region was issued under Bolton’s name. The Washington Post reported on Thursday that Trump has privately complained that Bolton is pushing an interventionist stance at odds with his view that the United States should stay out of foreign quagmires. Some Trump advisers have told Reuters in the past that they were concerned Bolton was sometimes pushing his own agenda rather than what the president would prefer. The president was asked about Bolton at an impromptu news conference in the White House Roosevelt Room on Thursday.”

Steve Holland, “Trump says Bolton doing a good job but has to temper him,” Reuters, May 9, 2019 12:03 pm

24,597. 5/3/2019

MIKE POMPEO/MILITARY/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT/VENEZUELA: “Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Thursday [5-2-19] that the Trump administration ‘will simply not rule out’ military action in Venezuela. And on Friday [5-3-19], Trump administration officials met for the second day in a row at the Pentagon to discuss options for toppling the country’s embattled autocratic leader. Speaking to reporters back in March, national security adviser John Bolton held a yellow notepad with a line of text conspicuously visible: ‘5,000 troops to Colombia,’ he had written. Together, the actions and planning meetings — one of them held in ‘the Tank,’ the Pentagon’s most secure room — are part of a threatening drumbeat aimed at Nicolás Maduro, who, U.S. officials say, may be on the brink of ouster…But on a day when Trump spoke to Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose backing of Maduro is causing tensions with the U.S., Trump officials and national security experts said mounting talk of U.S. military action is almost certainly hollow. Two U.S. officials told POLITICO these actions are designed more to rattle Maduro — and Venezuelan military leaders who have been a key source of support for him — than to foreshadow an American military effort in Venezuela.”

Eliana Johnson and Wesley Morgan, “Trump team tries to rattle Maduro with military tough talk,” Politico, May 3, 2019 7:42 pm

24,549. 5/1/2019

DEMS/ELECTION/GOP/LEGISLATION/NATIONAL SECURITY/SENATE/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Senate Democrats and Republicans can agree on perhaps just one thing about special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation — that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election. But bipartisan legislation to address foreign intrusions is all but dead amid a distinct lack of enthusiasm from Senate GOP leadership and the Trump White House. At a heated hearing with Attorney General William Barr on Wednesday, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) blasted the White House for blocking the election security bill she co-sponsored with Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) in the previous Congress. And in an interview, Klobuchar put the blame for the impasse squarely on President Donald Trump’s former White House counsel Don McGahn as well as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell…Klobuchar and Lankford’s bill would establish an Election Assistance Commission grant program and codify existing Department of Homeland Security election security roles. It would also emphasize sharing threat information with election officials and require back up paper ballots and audits.”

Marianne Levine and Tim Starks, “Election security push stumbles amid White House resistance,” Politico, May 1, 2019 8:42 pm

24,385. 4/26/2019

GOP/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT/TRUMP PEOPLE: “Rep. Jim Jordan, the top Republican on the House Oversight Committee, is seeking to resolve a tense dispute between Democrats and the White House as part of the panel’s review of the Trump administration’s security clearance process. In a letter obtained by CNN and dated Friday [4-26-19], Jordan is asking White House counsel Pat Cipollone to allow former official Carl Kline to sit down for a voluntary transcribed interview to avoid a growing constitutional clash between the two branches of government. The move comes after the White House instructed Kline, who now works at the Defense Department, to defy a subpoena because Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings would not allow a White House attorney to attend Kline’s deposition, citing committee rules. Cummings is now threatening to hold Kline in contempt, which Jordan says in his letter could happen as soon as Tuesday..In a letter Friday night to Jordan, Cipollone offered to make Kline available for an interview Wednesday to answer questions about the security clearance process. But Cipollone notes that the interview would be ‘limited to White House personnel security policy and practices, consistent’ with past offers to the panel, which Cummings had previously rejected.”

Manu Raju, “GOP’s Jordan asks White House to let ex-official testify to avoid ‘unnecessary conflict’ on security clearances,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, April 26, 2019 9:01 pm

23,969. 4/12/2019

INTELLIGENCE/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “RT @dbongino: With the exception of FISA warrants, the use of human intelligence assets, the use of national security letters, & the unprec…”

Donald Trump, Twitter.com, April 12, 2019 9:45 pm

23,665. 4/2/2019

BORDER/ECONOMY/MEXICO/NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump acknowledged Tuesday [4-2-19] that shutting down the U.S.-Mexico border could have a dire impact on the economy, but contended that the move was about national security, and ‘that’s more important than trade.’ Trump threatened last week to close the southern border if Mexico did not do more to stop the flood of Central American migrants making their way to the United States. He added to threat on Tuesday by saying that if Mexico or Congress don’t step up to solve the problem, ‘the border’s going to be closed 100 percent.’ Republican and Democratic lawmakers alike have expressed concern over Trump’s proposal to close the U.S.-Mexico border, arguing that such a move could have a disastrous impact on the economy. An estimated $502 billion in goods — about $1.4 billion a day — crossed the border through trucks and trains last year, according to the Commerce Department. Asked if he had any concern about the economic consequences of closing the border, Trump said that was less of a priority to him at the moment.”

Rebecca Morin and Caitlin Oprysko, “Trump says he’s willing to take the economic hit of closing the border,” Politico, April 2, 2019 3:06 pm

23,636. 4/1/2019

NATIONAL SECURITY/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT/TRUMP PEOPLE/WHITE HOUSE STAFF: “A White House staff member has told House investigators that senior officials have overruled concerns raised about 25 individuals whose security clearances were initially denied over a range of disqualifying issues — such as fears about foreign influence and potential conflicts-of-interests — warning of the grave implications to national security, according to a senior Democratic lawmaker. Now House Oversight Chairman Elijah Cummings plans to issue a subpoena this week demanding an interview with Carl Kline, who served as the personnel security director at the White House during President Donald Trump’s first two years in office — as part of the Democrats’ investigation into the handling of the security clearance process, including for Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and the President’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, who are both also White House advisers…Cummings released a memo Monday detailing an interview with Tricia Newbold, a White House employee who has worked for 18 years in Republican and Democratic administrations and currently serves as the Adjudications Manager in the Personnel Security Office.”

Manu Raju and Lauren Fox, “Cummings: Whistleblower says White House pushed for security clearances despite ‘serious disqualifying issues’,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, April 1, 2019 9:53 pm