News broke last night that Hillary Clinton, along with 5 aides (Cheryl Mills among them) had their security clearances revoked on August 30th. They were not revoked by President Trump, however, as Clinton had written to the Senate Judiciary Committee requesting the clearances be rescinded.
A letter, intended to be kept private, had been written to Committee chairperson Chuck Grassley. The senior senator from Iowa released the letter this week.
A letter addressed to Grassley read, “We request that you protect the information in this letter, as it is not public and generally not appropriate for public release. Therefore, we note that the public release of any portion of the enclosed information is not authorized by this communication and, should you wish to disclose any portions thereof, we ask that you provide the Department with a reasonable opportunity to inform the Committee of any sensitive information that should be safe-guarded.”
Grassley ignored these requests in this release of the letter. Clinton’s former Director of Communications responded aggressively on his Twitter account. “Sure enough, 6 weeks later Senator Grassley, king among partisans, released a letter, again playing politics with our national security. It’s a disgrace.”
The exact reasons for Clinton’s request are unknown, but Merrill alludes to it having to do with the revocation of John Brennan’s clearance.
Brennan, former CIA director, had his security clearance revoked in August after being critical of Trump. Sarah Huckabee Sanders claimed the move was made after Brennan used, “highly sensitive information to make a series of unfounded and outrageous allegations – wild outbursts on the internet and television – about this administration.”
Trump followed up the Brennan revocation threats with more threats to remove the clearances of other political opponents. While Clinton was not on his initial list, it is clear why Clinton would feel she would eventually be threatened.
Clinton may have asked to remove her security privileges as a preemptive strike, taking away the opportunity for Trump to use the revocation as a political tool.