The State Department has withdrawn Hillary Clinton’s security clearance for classified information after the former Democratic presidential candidate requested the action days after President Trump pulled the clearance for Barack Obama’s CIA Director John Brennan.
Brennan’s security was yanked on August 15, and Trump announced he would be evaluating access to classified information held by thousands of former government officials. Clinton’s clearance was withdrawn August 30 at her request, but no doubt because Trump was set to move on the issue.
Clinton and former chief of staff Cheryl Mills lost their clearances, as did four other Clinton staffers whose names were redacted, according to a letter dated September 21 to the leadership of the Senate Judiciary Committee that was published Friday by Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley.
Clinton was investigated by the FBI over a private email server she had in her home, which she kept secret. She used the server to move email among her top aides, including hundreds deemed “classified.” The FBI investigated, but then-FBI director James Comey, a bona fide Trump hater, chose not charge her.
Shortly before Clinton’s request, Trump had revoked Brennan’s security clearance citing “a series of unfounded and outrageous allegations” about his administration, and for Brennan’s move to “sow division and chaos,” he said.
Brennan had became a darling of the liberal media, appearing on NBC News and MSNBC regularly. He literally made a job of ripping the president (some “contributors” make $100,000 or more), prompting Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) to pose a few questions: “Is John Brennan monetizing his security clearance? Is John Brennan making millions of dollars divulging secrets to the mainstream media with his attacks on @realDonaldTrump,” he tweeted on July 23.
Brennan said the move showed that Trump “clearly has become more desperate to protect himself and those close to him, which is why he made the politically motivated decision to revoke my security clearance in an attempt to scare into silence others who might dare to challenge him.”
Grassley had asked the State Department more than a year ago to find out whether Clinton and her aides still had security clearances. The White House also said in August that the president was reviewing clearances of other top officials, including former FBI director James Comey, former CIA director Michael Hayden, former national security adviser Susan Rice and former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe.
In pulling Brennan’s clearance, Trump said: “I have a unique constitutional responsibility to protect the nation’s classified information, including by controlling access to it. Today, in fulfilling that responsibility, I have decided to revoke the security clearance of John Brennan, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Mr. Brennan’s lying and recent conduct characterized by increasingly frenzied commentary is wholly inconsistent with access to the nation’s most closely held secrets.”