Susan Rice keeping her Top Secret security clearances courtesy H.R. McMaster has been the news for the past two days. The biggest problem is that Rice is being looked at for possibly unmasking Americans illegally. Allowing her to keep the clearance goes a long way to exonerating her before she is even investigated.
General McMaster waived her right to a ‘need-to-know’ to access any classified information contained in items she ‘originated, reviewed, signed or received while serving,’ as National Security Adviser.” That’s a lot of intel.
Eli Lake reported McMaster has “concluded Rice did nothing wrong” when she sought the names of Trump associates discussed in intelligence reports. Those sympathetic with Steve Bannon and McMaster’s immediate predecessor, Mike Flynn, believe otherwise. The laws surrounding unmasking were loosened up to the extent that it all might have been legal.
No one, however, seems concerned about the fact that Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, John Podesta, and all the other leftists who ran the government over the last eight years likely got to keep their security clearances.
They likely got the same letter from H.R. McMaster that Susan Rice received?
Michael Warren writing for The Weekly Standard was told McMaster wrote similar letters to all the living national security advisers from past administrations—Democratic and Republican—as a matter of longstanding practice.
Revoking Rice’s clearance would have been unusual. And that practice applies not just to national security advisers but to other departments and agencies, such as secretary of State. The reason, the official said, is for the purposes of continuity. Without a continued security clearance, it would be illegal for government officials to discuss relevant sensitive information with a former official. The process for reauthorizing a past official’s security clearance is lengthy.
Oddly, as a former secretary of state, Obama allowed Hillary Clinton to keep her security clearance until 2015, for two years after her departure. She misused secrets yet she got to keep her clearance.
And it wasn’t just Clinton who kept the power of top secret access. It was six of her former staffers, who went by the tag of “research assistants,” Fox News reported. Sen. Grassley was baffled by it when he found out last March.
“I have repeatedly asked the State Department whether Secretary Clinton and her associates had their clearances suspended or revoked to which the Obama Administration refused to respond,” Grassley wrote in a March 30 letter to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
“Recently, the State Department informed the Committee that six additional Secretary Clinton staff at State were designated as her research assistants which allowed them to retain their clearances after leaving the Department,” Grassley added.
— FOX & friends (@foxandfriends) March 31, 2017
The motley crew still has access to Top Secret documents
As a former candidate, she gets to keep it again. Those who keep the clearance keep it for at least a year often to use it for their memoirs and similar activities. They are only supposed to look at documents they touched. It would be nice to have more details on that.
Then there are others who kept it: Barack Obama, John Brennan, James Clapper, Jim Comey who just signed a multi-million dollar book deal and the list is endless.
Do they still get any briefings?