Transcript for Trump revokes security clearance of former CIA Dir. Brennan, mulling others
I'd like to begin by reading a statement from the president. It is ahead of the executive branch and commander in chief. I be unique constitutional responsibility. To protect the nation's classified information. Including by controlling access to. Today in fulfilling that responsibility. I decided to revoke the security clearance of John Brennan former director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Historically former heads of intelligence and law enforcement agencies have been allowed to retain access to classified information. After their government service so that they can consult with their successors regarding matters. About which they may have special insights and as a professional courtesy. Neither of these justification supports mr. Brennan's continued access to classified information. First at this point my administration. Any benefits that senior officials might glean from consultations with mr. Brennan are now outweighed by the risks posed by his erratic conduct and behavior. Second that conduct and behavior has tested and far exceeded the limits any professional courtesy that may have been due to him. Mr. Brennan has a history that calls into question his objectivity and credibility. And 2014 for example he denied to congress that CIA officials under his supervision. Had improperly accessed the computer files congressional staffers. He told the council foreign relations at the CIA would never gave such a thing. The CIA's inspector general however contradicted mr. Brennan directly. Concluding unequivocally that agency officials had indeed improperly accessed congressional staffers files. More recently mr. Brennan told congress that the intelligence community did not make use of the so called steel dossier. In an assessment regarding the 2016 election. An assertion contradicted by at least two other senior officials in the intelligence community and all of the facts. Additionally mr. Brennan has recently leveraged his status as a former high ranking official with access to highly sensitive information. To make a series of unfounded an outrageous allegations wild outburst on the Internet and television about this administration. Mr. Brennan's line in recent conduct characterized by increasingly frenzied commentary is wholly inconsistent. With access in the nation's most closely held secrets and facilities the very name of our adversaries which is to sow division and chaos. More broadly the issue of mr. Brennan security clearance raises larger questions. About the practice of former officials maintaining access to our nation's most sensitive secrets. Long after their time in government has ended. Such access is particularly inappropriate when former officials have transitioned into highly partisan positions. And seek to use real or perceived access to sensitive information to validate their political attacks. Any access granted to our nation's secrets should be in furtherance of national not personal interest. For this reason I also begun to review the more general question of the access to classified information by government officials. As part of this review I'm evaluating action with respect to the following individuals. James clapper James coney Michael Hayden Sally Yates Susan Rice Andrew McKay. Peter struck Lisa page and Bruce or. Security clearances for those who still have them may be revoked and those who have already lost their security clearance may not be able to have it reinstated. It is for the foregoing reasons that I've exercise my constitutional authority to deny mr. Brennan access. To classified information. Allen director appropriate staff at the National Security Council to make the necessary arrangements with the appropriate agencies to implement this determination.
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