Sarah Huckabee Sanders, our wonderful White House Press Secretary, sent liberals into a tizzy on Monday with her announcement that President Trump is considering revoking the security clearances of several Deep State leaders. John Brennan, a liberal mouthpiece who became Obama’s CIA director after having once voted for the Communist Party for president, would be among the first to lose his security clearance.
Oh my. The Left has not panicked so much since the Election Night returns put Donald Trump into the White House.
Another candidate for revocation is Susan Rice, who was Obama’s national security adviser thought to have improperly obtained the identity of General Michael Flynn on a wiretap. The since-replaced national security adviser H.R. McMaster allowed Rice to retain her security clearance, waiving the customary “need-to-know” requirement to allow Rice unlimited access to anything she ever reviewed or received when in office.
In addition to Brennan and Rice, revocation is being considered for the discredited FBI officials James Comey and Andrew McCabe, the former National Security Agency Director Michael Hayden, and the former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. It was Clapper who famously lied under oath to Congress about his secret surveillance program of Americans.
“They’ve politicized, and in some cases, monetized their public service,” explained Sanders to the media on Monday. “Making baseless accusations of an improper relationship with Russia is inappropriate,” Sanders added.
Sanders is precisely right that “the fact that people with security clearances are making these baseless charges provides inappropriate legitimacy to accusations with zero evidence.” Those who repeatedly make false accusations against our Commander-in-Chief are unfit to be trusted with confidential information about our national security.
The Never-Trumpers will always enjoy their First Amendment rights, but they should not have access to our national secrets while they are writing books and profiting from their irresponsible, false claims about our president. Some of them respond by saying their ability to see classified information has already been terminated, but those security clearances could be easily reinstated unless Trump revokes them.
Americans voted for a new direction for our country under President Trump, in repudiation of the path that Obama was taking us, so why are the losers still around pretending to speak with authority? Many Americans are probably wondering why the security clearances of these acolytes of Obama were not fully revoked long ago.
Phyllis Schlafly often criticized past Republican presidents who failed to “clean house” and replace the supporters of their defeated opponents. She extracted a promise from President Ronald Reagan that he would never appoint a Deep Stater from the Nixon-Ford era, Henry Kissinger, to anything of significance, and Reagan kept his promise.
Tossing out the entrenched insiders who are so determined to defeat President Trump requires, at a minimum, taking away the special authority they unjustifiably continue to enjoy. John Brennan and James Clapper would still be able to pontificate all they like on television, but they should not be able to do so with the implied authority of an active security clearance.
Late last Friday, in a delayed release to avoid the news cycle, the Deep State finally partially complied with a court order to hand over its FISA application for wiretaps of a former adviser to the Trump campaign in 2016, Carter Page. The heavily redacted, secret application was for repeated wiretaps of Carter Page’s phone, in an unsuccessful attempt by the Deep State to catch Trump in a misstep on a secretly recorded line.
FISA stands for the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978, which authorizes secret proceedings to order wiretaps that would not ordinarily be allowed. This shadow system enabling investigators to obtain wiretaps from a secret court has grown ever since, with no meaningful check or balance.
The FISA application to wiretap the Trump adviser is filled with innuendo and false allegations that came from the Hillary Clinton campaign. Wiretaps of someone connected with a presidential campaign, on such a flimsy basis, bring new meaning to the term “rubber stamp” in describing how the FISA court grants whatever the Deep State demands.
Allies of Brennan, Clapper, and the others, protest that President Trump may lack the authority to revoke their security clearances, but the power of the president to do so can hardly be doubted. They may run to court to enjoin the president on this, but hardly any Supreme Court Justice would rule against the presidential power to decide, in his own discretion, who should not have a security clearance.
“Mr. Strzok — as I understand — has lost his security clearance,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions declared last month about the disgraced FBI official Peter Strzok who stated he would “stop” Trump from becoming president. Trump should take similar action to ensure that others like him do not continue to have special access to our nation’s most confidential information.
John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.