Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), who is chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, claimed Sunday that President Donald Trump should immediately and permanently lose access to routine intelligence briefings.
“There’s no circumstance in which this president should get another intelligence briefing — not now, not in the future,” Schiff said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.” “I don’t think he can be trusted with it now and, in the future, he certainly can’t be trusted. Indeed, there were, I think, any number of intelligence partners of ours around the world who probably started withholding information from us because they didn’t trust the president would safeguard that information and protect their sources and methods.”
“And that makes us less safe,” Schiff continued. “We’ve seen this president politicize intelligence, and that’s another risk to the country.”
"There's no circumstance in which [Trump] should get another intelligence briefing. Not now, not in the future. I don't think he can be trusted with it now, and in the future he certainly can't be trusted." — Schiff pic.twitter.com/hBF0bQS5PU
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) January 17, 2021
Schiff’s comments came in response to an op-ed in The Washington Post from Susan Gordon, who was once the second-highest-ranking official in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. She argued that Trump should lose all security clearance after his presidency.
“My recommendation, as a 30-plus-year veteran of the intelligence community, is not to provide him any briefings after Jan. 20. With this simple act — which is solely the new president’s prerogative — Joe Biden can mitigate one aspect of the potential national security risk posed by Donald Trump, private citizen,” Gordon wrote.
“For four years, as president, he has received — or had opportunity to receive — every single piece of information and analysis that the intelligence community produced, regardless of compartment or classification,” Gordon continued. “It is hard to overstate the value of what he has read and heard.”
“His post-White House ‘security profile,’ as the professionals like to call it, is daunting,” Gordon said. “Any former president is by definition a target and presents some risks. But a former president Trump, even before the events of last week, might be unusually vulnerable to bad actors with ill intent. He leaves, unlike his predecessors who embraced the muted responsibilities of being a ‘former,’ with a stated agenda to stay engaged in politics and policy. No departing president in the modern era has hinted at or planned on becoming a political actor immediately after leaving office.”
“I do not make this recommendation casually,” Gordon said. “It is based on my deep understanding of threats to national security, on decades protecting our people and interests overseas, and my experience deploying technical means to counter our adversaries.”
Claiming she has personally briefed Trump, Gordon maintained that her op-ed was not a personal grievance. “As an intelligence professional, I have gone out of my way not to judge his policy or personal actions publicly. This is an intelligence assessment born of my years of experience,” she claimed.