Off with their security clearances!
President Trump is looking into whether he may legally remove the security clearances of several former Obama intelligence officials, including, but not limited to, former CIA director John Brennan, former FBI director James Comey, former national security adviser Susan Rice, and former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe. According to White House press secretary Sarah Sanders:
The president is exploring the mechanisms to remove security clearances because they politicize and in some cases monetize their public service and security clearances, making baseless accusations of improper contact with Russia.
As expected, some Democrats have attacked the president's contemplated course of action. Some, like Senator Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), compared Trump's purported move to "totalitarianism." Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) criticized Trump's contemplated action by suggesting that it would create partisanship in intelligence, which she apparently opposes. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) slammed Trump, calling his consideration "a cowardly action of someone who is afraid of criticism."
With all due respect to these "critics," President Trump appears to be following the proper course of action. If he is legally permitted to strip these individuals of their security clearances, wouldn't it be in our best interest? After all, the main purpose behind the security clearance (of former officials) is so they can help the government when necessary (i.e., provide classified information about a foreign government or past events to a new administration, etc.), not so they can help themselves.
If these individuals are using intelligence and information at the highest level of government and leaking them to the press and other third parties, what possible justification could be presented against stripping them of their rights? If they are obtaining and using information for the sole purpose of bringing down a sitting United States president, shouldn't their security clearances be eradicated? If their deep-rooted bias and hatred of the president dictate how they conduct themselves, should they have unfettered access to such sensitive and classified information?
To gain a better understanding of why the president's proposed conduct makes perfect sense, one can look at the U.S. legal system. Specifically, the first "part" of a civil or criminal trial in the U.S. is referred to as voir dire. During voir dire, lawyers ask potential jurors questions to determine whether they have any potential conflicts, biases, preconceived opinions, etc. that would impact their ability to remain impartial. If a lawyer has a specific reason to believe that a juror cannot be fair, unbiased, etc., he can ask the judge to dismiss the juror "for cause." The judge will then decide if dismissal is warranted. Lawyers are also given several peremptory challenges, where they can dismiss jurors without providing any reasons.
The primary purpose of voir dire is to ensure that the parties to a case receive a fair trial, that those determining the outcome of the matter are impartial. While President Trump is not on trial, the people whose security clearance he wants to strip have publicly proclaimed their disdain for President Trump and their desire to bring him down.
For example, on March 17, 2018, Brennan made the following comments about President Trump on Twitter:
When the full extent of your venality, moral turpitude, and political corruption becomes known, you will take your rightful place as a disgraced demagogue in the dustbin of history. You may scapegoat Andy McCabe, but you will not destroy America...America will triumph over you.
Along similar lines, James Comey was quoted as saying:
A person who sees moral equivalence in Charlottesville, who talks about and treats women like they're pieces of meat, who lies constantly about matters big and small and insists the American people believe it, that person's not fit to be president of the United States, on moral grounds.
Comments of this nature reflect not only bias against the president, but a deeply rooted desire to remove him from office. If this is the case, President Trump appears to have ample justification to strip these individuals of their security clearances if the law so allows. Like the jurors who are stricken "for cause," some (or all) of these people have expressed overt bias against the president, a desperate desire to remove him from office, and an inability to remain impartial.
Clearly, their security clearances were not given to them for these reasons! As such, they should not have access to such sensitive and classified information!
Mr. Hakim is a writer and a practicing attorney. His articles have been published in the World Net Daily, American Thinker, the Sun-Sentinel, and other online publications.
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