National Security

Trump's Disregard for Law & Order Threatens National Security

Trump's Disregard for Law & Order Threatens National Security

With dozens of individuals working in the White House without proper background checks and security clearances, Donald Trump’s law and order pledge is worthless.

With dozens of individuals working in the White House without proper background checks and security clearances, Donald Trump’s law and order pledge is worthless.

Donald Trump staked his campaign to the notion that he was the law and order candidate. He spent countless hours at rallies aimlessly opining about taking our country back from an unfettered wave of lawlessness . He indicted undocumented immigrants, Muslim refugees, and a host of other “villains.” He even dedicated several minutes of political theater to the topic during his speech at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. 

 

It is becoming evident that this call for “law and order” is more a “do as I say and not as I do” arrangement. A major case in point is the recent troubling revelations about Staff Secretary, Rob Porter. The situation surrounding the alleged wife-beating Porter brought to light the White House’s lax standards of morals, ethics, and conduct, but also laid bare a major potential threat to national security.

It was revealed that Rob Porter hadn’t been granted the necessary security clearance for his position in the White House and was operating on an interim clearance. Several voiced concerns about the multiple allegations of domestic violence, including that Porter could be a target of blackmail. Moreover, he wasn’t alone. It is estimated that 30 – 40 administration officials (including Jared Kushner) are currently working without security clearance and are likely handling sensitive national security intelligence on a daily basis.

How does this align with the oft-repeated claim of respect and adherence to law or order? The message Trump is sending to the American people is that as long as you remain loyal to him and his presidency, you’re alright. Disgraced former National Security Advisor and felon, Michael Flynn, lied to the FBI, the Vice President, and the American people about his communications with Russian officials concerning sanctions. The Justice Department also warned the White House that Flynn could potentially be blackmailed. The administration overlooked these lies, and he remained (vulnerable to blackmail) in his position, with access to the highest levels of national security intelligence, for weeks. He was only finally removed from his position when the public found out after the media reported on his activities. Jared Kushner presents another example of the administration’s negligent attitude towards national security. Kushner amended his SF-86 security clearance application form multiple times after glaring omissions were revealed, including contact with Russian officials. These instances don’t seem to be anomalies. They appear to be more of an operational regularity in the Trump White House.

If Donald Trump cannot be trusted with the easy task of personnel choices, how can he be trust with the infinitely complex ones which involve existential threats to our nation? Unfortunately, the short answer is, he cannot!

Jesse Dollemore

Jesse Dollemore is co-founder of Statesmith.com. He's also a former U.S. Marine, current political commentator, and future [insert super impressive accomplishment here].

Jesse Dollemore

Jesse Dollemore is co-founder of Statesmith.com. He's also a former U.S. Marine, current political commentator, and future [insert super impressive accomplishment here].