Rep. Guthrie Seeks Review of Security Clearances, Goodwill Gesture from Putin

Jul 25, 2018

Credit Office of U.S. Rep. Brett Guthrie

As President Trump considers revoking the securing clearances of some former intelligence officials, Kentucky's 2nd District Congressman, Brett Guthrie, says there should be a review of who gets and maintains access to classified information. 

In an interview with WKU Public Radio, the Bowling Green Republican said he was surprised to learn that some staffers outside of an administration are allowed to keep their security credentials.

"I don't think we need to say that these people, because they made comments against the president, should necessarily lose their security clearance because of that, but I do think that people, once they leave an administration, they shouldn't have a security clearance," stated Guthrie.

Rep. Guthrie says he thinks only ex-presidents should have security clearances at the end of an administration. 

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky said on Monday that he asked President Trump to revoke the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan after he criticized the president’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. 

“Just got out of WH meeting with @realDonaldTrump. I restated to him what I have said in public: John Brennan and others partisans should have their security clearances revoked,” Paul tweeted.

The GOP lawmaker praised the meeting as an effort to build a better relationship with Russia.

While he has some reservations about a White House visit this fall, Congressman Guthrie says the U.S. does need to maintain an open dialogue with Putin.

"What would I like? I would hope that he would support Europe, he would support NATO, we could have trade and economically work together," commented Guthrie.

Guthrie says the U.S Should be careful when bringing foreign leaders to the White House because of the welcome signal that it sends the rest of the world.  The Bowling Green Republican says he’d like to see a some positive action by Putin, such as pulling out of Crimea, before his visit to show that he’s coming in good faith.  Guthrie credits North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un for releasing some American prisoners following his meeting with President Trump. 

Rep. Guthrie says he thinks there is no interest in inviting Putin to speak to a joint session of Congress.

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