White House senior adviser Jared Kushner’s top secret security clearance was denied when security officials realized the depth of his foreign entanglements. However, their supervisor overturned the rejection, the same move he would make 29 more times despite the rarity of disregarding those warnings.
According to a Thursday NBC News report, the official who overturned the rejection is Carl Kline, who became head of the personnel security office in May 2017. In the three years before he took office, the person in Kline’s position had overturned White House security officials’ determinations on clearance just once.
The red flags raised in Kushner’s background check included his foreign business and travel, along with meetings he took during the campaign.
Per NBC, after Kline overruled his employees to give Kushner top secret designation, Kushner’s file went to the CIA for approval on an even higher security designation: SCI, or sensitive compartmented information. The CIA was reportedly shocked that Kushner had even made it to the top secret level and denied him the higher clearance.
The House Oversight Committee is launching investigations into security clearances at the White House, according to a letter sent by Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-MD) on Wednesday.