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Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi

Representing the 8th District of Illinois

Congressman Krishnamoorthi Letter To Government Background Check Agency: Has Anyone Other Than Jared Kushner Maintained A Security Clearance After Attempting To Establish A Secret Backchannel with a Foreign Power?

November 16, 2017
Press Release

Washington, DC – Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi of the House Oversight Committee today wrote to Director Charles S. Phalen, Jr. of the National Background Investigations Bureau to ask if any applicant for a security clearance other than Jared Kushner had ever been able to maintain that clearance after attempting to establish a secret, off-the-record backchannel with a foreign power.

Krishnamoorthi’s letter comes in the wake the Senate Judiciary Committee’s revealing that Kushner had failed to produce documents about a "Russian backdoor overture and dinner invite" and the Washington Post’s report earlier this year that Kushner sought to establish a secret, encrypted communications channel with the Kremlin. During an October Oversight Committee hearing, Congressman Krishnamoorthi questioned Director Phalen on the more than 100 errors and omissions in Kushner’s security application. While emphasizing he had not reviewed Kushner’s application itself, Director Phalen did note that, despite his experience in security clearance investigations, he had "never seen that level of mistakes."

The text of Congressman Krishnamoorthi’s letter follows and the letter itself is viewable here.

 

November 16, 2017

Charles S. Phalen, Jr.

Director

National Background Investigations Bureau

1900 E Street, NW

Washington, DC 20415

 

Dear Director Phalen:

On October 11, you appeared before an Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee Hearing where you testified that “I have never seen that level of mistakes” regarding Senior White House Advisor Jared Kushner’s errors on his security clearance paperwork. As you recall, Kushner had over 100 errors and omissions on his SF-86 form.

In light of today’s revelation that Kushner failed to disclose documents regarding a “Russian backdoor overture and dinner invite,” I would like you to clarify:

  • Are you aware of any applicant for a security clearance who was able to maintain that clearance after trying to establish a secret, off-the-record backchannel with a foreign power?

Thank you for your attention to this matter, and I look forward to your response.

 

Sincerely,

Raja Krishnamoorthi
Member of Congress