After it was reported that Trump chief of staff John Kelly let Rob Porter continue to handle classified information after his security clearance expired, Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) noted that Kelly committed a crime and must resign if the report is accurate.
In Porter’s case, the interim security clearances had been temporary: 180 days with the option for extension (another 180 days). Porter appears to have started on January 20, 2017—Inauguration Day. Assuming he was given that “interim” clearance on Day One, it would have expired on January 15, 2018.
The fact that chief of staff Kelly—a former military officer and former secretary of homeland security—would not have seen this as a problem is staggering. He would know better than anyone that managing highly restricted information is essential to American national security.
Rep. Lieu reacted to the story by tweeting:
This is a very disturbing article. If in fact Rob Porter's interim security clearance expired on Jan 15 and John Kelly continued to let him handle highly classified information, then Kelly must resign. Also, giving someone classified info who is not cleared to see it is a crime. https://t.co/ZOiYU8Jrtm
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) February 11, 2018
John Kelly may have committed a crime
We know that Rob Porter’s security clearance expired on January 15, 2018. We also know that as the White House secretary he was handling the most sensitive classified information that our intelligence community collects. John Kelly knew that Porter was not only a serial domestic abuser but also lacked the proper security clearance to be handling the information that he was seeing.
Kelly and the rest of the White House ignored the FBI’s concerns and possibly committed a crime by giving an unauthorized person access to classified intelligence for weeks.
The general who was brought into the corrupt and chaotic Trump White House to restore order is just another player in the Trump crime wave.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor, who is White House Press Pool, and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association