Published: Fri, August 17, 2018

Senate Intel chairman slams former Central Intelligence Agency director for Trump-Russia claims

Senate Intel chairman slams former Central Intelligence Agency director for Trump-Russia claims

Trump told The Wall Street Journal in an interview Wednesday that his decision - and threat to revoke other clearances - stemmed from his frustrations with the ongoing investigation into Russian election meddling and potential collusion with his campaign.

The top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee is criticizing former CIA Director John BrennanJohn Owen BrennanTucker Carlson attacks press as "state media" after Trump strips ex-CIA chief's clearance Comey: Trump revoking Brennan's security clearance shows "he will punish people who disagree with him" Trump draws bipartisan fire over Brennan MORE for his recent comments about Russian election interference, saying that President TrumpDonald John TrumpGillibrand urges opposition to Kavanaugh: Fight for abortion rights "is now or never" Trump claims tariffs on foreign nations will rescue U.S. steel industry: report Bannon announces pro-Trump movie, operation team ahead of midterms: report MORE has the "full authority" to revoke security clearance if the statements were "purely political and based on conjecture".

John Brennan wrote that it is "critically important" that special counsel Robert Mueller be permitted to complete his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and whether Trump's campaign coordinated with Russia.

"So I think it's something that had to be done", Trump said.

President Donald Trump speaks to members of the media before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn at the White House in Washington Friday Aug. 17 2018 for a short trip to Andrews Air Force Base Md. and then on to Southampton N.Y. for a fundraiser

There was no reference to the Russian Federation probe in a White House statement Wednesday that was read at a press briefing and then sent out to reporters.

"Mr. Trump clearly has become more desperate to protect himself and those close to him", Brennan wrote, calling the clearance revocation "an attempt to scare into silence others who might dare to challenge him". The White House later issued a revised statement with that date removed.

The administration has offered conflicting explanations for the president's unusual decision to revoke Brennan's security clearance. The original statement released by the White House on Wednesday included a date of July 26, although aides said that was an error.

Sanders also listed nine other national security figures whose security clearances were under review. Press secretary Sarah Sanders accused the former officials of "politicizing agencies and departments that are specifically meant to not be political". Bob Corker, Republican from Tennessee, saying, "Unless there's something tangible that I'm unaware of, it just, as I've said before, feels like a banana republic kind of thing".

Like this: