The President of the United States can release classified documents, can unclassify documents, and can grant security clearances to anyone he or she wishes. The President is the CEO of the country and has that authority.
There is some danger in giving a clearance to someone who doesn’t pass the background check, and if voters decide President Trump is foolishly giving out clearances, maybe they will vote for someone else next time.
Wait a second! Maybe that’s the point of today’s article. We have a “whistleblower” who objects to having some White House staff get clearances despite their applications being flagged or denied for various reasons. Maybe this person is just doing her patriotic duty to call attention to a possible security vulnerability, or maybe she has an axe to grind. And maybe the media and the Democrats who spoke to the whistleblower are playing this up for political reasons.
But it is just a fact that, like hiring and firing the FBI Director, the president has the power to do this. And it is admitted in the article, right near the very end, on page six: “There is nothing barring the president or his designees from overturning the assessments of career officials.”
This article gets a slight downgrade because this important fact, while disclosed, should have been near the top. And it gets another slight downgrade because the intent of this article is to damage the president by implying that he is doing something improper, or that this staffer has a better understanding of our national security needs than the entire Trump administration, who she works for.
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