The White House revealed that Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, will stay on in his current role despite having his top-level security clearance downgraded.
“He’s doing a great job on behalf of the president and he is going to continue in his role,” White House spokesman Raj Shah said on CNN Tuesday evening.
According to The Hill, the White House wants to quiet speculation that Kushner’s position is in trouble due to the fact that his clearance was downgraded as part of chief of staff John Kelly’s decision to take access to classified information away from certain members of the Trump administration.
Kushner’s former temporary security clearance offered him access to some of the nation’s top secrets, and some are questioning how his new lower level clearance will allow him to do his job.
“I can’t imagine that he can continue in that job,” former CIA official John Sipher said during an interview on MSNBC.
Trump’s son-in-law was working under a temporary security clearance due to numerous delays in his Federal Bureau of Investigation background check.
Kelly reportedly made the decision to revoke Kushner’s clearance after domestic abuse allegations against White House staff secretary Rob Porter were brought to light. Porter was also working under a temporary security clearance.
Although Kelly has yet to comment on Kushner’s reduced security clearance, he did issue a statement last week defending him.
“As I told Jared days ago, I have full confidence in his ability to continue performing his duties in his foreign policy portfolio including overseeing our Israeli-Palestinian peace effort and serving as an integral part of our relationship with Mexico,” the chief of staff said.