The New York Times reports President Donald Trump ordered his then-chief-of-staff John Kelly to grant Jared Kushner a security clearance, despite clear evidence Kushner’s application was of concern and over objections of intelligence officials and even the White House counsel.
Kushner, who serves as Senior Advisor to the President, is also the President’s son-in-law.
“Mr. Trump’s decision in May so troubled senior administration officials that at least one, the White House chief of staff at the time, John F. Kelly, wrote a contemporaneous internal memo about how he had been ‘ordered’ to give Mr. Kushner the top-secret clearance,” the Times reports.
Then-White House Counsel “had recommended that” Kushner “not be given a top-secret clearance.”
President Trump repeatedly has denied ever having anything to do with obtaining security clearances for members of his family, including Kushner and Ivanka Trump, who is the First Daughter and White House Advisor to the President.
The Times notes that only in “highly unusual cases” does the president weigh in to grant a topsecret security clearance.
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Seven Florida Republicans File Slew of Anti-LGBTQ Bills
Seven Florida Republican lawmakers have filed four bills attacking the LGBTQ community.
NBC News reports “the bills would ban gender-affirming health care for transgender children, repeal municipal and county ordinances protecting LGBTQ workers, and legalize so-called gay conversion therapy in places that had banned the medically debunked practice.”
Conversion therapy has been compared to torture by those who have been victims of it, and states have been banning the practice given its ties to suicide and attempted suicide.
The lawmakers are Rep. Anthony Sabatini, Sen. Dennis Baxley, Rep. Bob Rommel, Sen. Joe Gruters, Rep. Michael Grant, Sen. Keith Perry, and Rep. Byron Donalds (images above, in order of NBC’s reporting.) (NCRM has added links to their Twitter accounts.)
Orlando Weekly’s Solomon Gustavo reports on House Bill 136, filed by Sabatini and Baxley, “which would make it a second-degree felony for health care practitioners to administer treatment for transitioning or changing a child’s sex.”
Elizabeth Warren Calls for Investigation Into Legality of Trump Tipping Off Mar-a-Lago Guests to Soleimani’s Killing
Elizabeth Warren is calling for financial regulatory agencies to investigate whether President Trump broke the law when he told guests at his Mar-a-Lago resort to expect something “big” in response to Iran’s killing of an American contractor in Iraq, The Daily Beast reports.
“Individuals who were guests at President Trump’s resort may have obtained confidential market-moving information,” a letter Warren sent to agencies read. “These private individuals … would have had the opportunity to obtain significant profits simply by being guests or members at President Trump’s private resort.”
Read the full report over at The Daily Beast.
Rupert Murdoch’s Son Rips Fox News for Pushing Falsehoods About Australian Wildfires
Rupert Murdoch’s younger son and his wife launched an attack on News Corporation for promoting conspiracy theories about Australia’s devastating wildfires.
Columnists and broadcasters from News Corp Australia — which dominates the country’s media — have questioned climate change’s role in the fires and downplayed the devastation, and James Murdoch and his wife Kathryn condemned the family business, reported The Daily Beast.
“Kathryn and James’ views on climate are well established and their frustration with some of the News Corp and Fox coverage of the topic is also well known,” said a spokesperson for the couple. “They are particularly disappointed with the ongoing denial among the news outlets in Australia given obvious evidence to the contrary.”
James Murdoch is CEO of the investment firm Lupa Systems but sits on the board of News Corp, which publishes more than 140 newspapers in Australia, and his brother Lachlan runs the Fox News Channel in the U.S.
“They are pissing inside the tent and that’s unusual,” said a longtime News Corp executive. “It’s evidence of how high tensions are within the family over climate change. The majority of people who work here agree with James. We are hoping this may be the tipping point.”
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