The Washington Post is reporting that Donald Trump will leave son-in-law Jared Kushner’s security clearance to John Kelly. If true, it would mean a potentially crushing defeat for Kushner, who has been wrangling with Kelly for months.
As LR Net noted on 22 Feb, Kushner has taken on a senior role in the Trump White House, but he has been unable to gain a security clearance commensurate with his position. Why remains something of a mystery. We speculated that it might have something to do with his known connections with Russian and Chinese agents. Salon’s Heather Digby Parton has suggested that the problem may be that Kushner and his family owe millions on several ventures and now he could be blackmailed or manipulated by foreign powers.
Whatever the cause, Kelly has been notably reticent to give Kushner a security clearance. Further, Kelly and Kushner are said to be competing fiercely for influence in the White House.
By saying that he will leave Kushner’s clearance issue with Kelly, Trump is tacitly siding with Kelly against his own son-in-law. Of course, this could change at any time. Trump is nothing if not inconsistent. But, even so, this is an extremely serious matter for Kushner, who may now find his fate in the hands of one of his worst enemies.