Are you feeling “gravely worried”? You should be according to Obama CIA Director John Brennan, whose security clearance the president revoked yesterday.
Shortly after the announcement was made by White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders, Brennan tweeted out:
This action is part of a broader effort by Mr. Trump to suppress freedom of speech & punish critics. It should gravely worry all Americans, including intelligence professionals, about the cost of speaking out. My principles are worth far more than clearances. I will not relent.
This action is part of a broader effort by Mr. Trump to suppress freedom of speech & punish critics. It should gravely worry all Americans, including intelligence professionals, about the cost of speaking out. My principles are worth far more than clearances. I will not relent. https://t.co/TNzOxhP9ux
— John O. Brennan (@JohnBrennan) August 15, 2018
Brennan wasn’t the only one to sound the alarm on Twitter. Another well-know liberal opined:
The would be Autocrat strikes again. John Brennan is a patriot. Stripping the former CIA director of his security clearance should frighten all patriots. Before this mentally unstable fool completely destroys our Democracy & hands US over to Putin, Nov.6 VOTE!!!
— Rob Reiner (@robreiner) August 15, 2018
Great minds and all that.
So let’s analyze the situation. Before losing his security clearance, Brennan was one of Donald Trump’s most outspoken critics. He shared his opinions almost daily on social media and cable TV.
Now that he no longer has security clearance, how will any of that change? As a commentator on MSNBC he will have access to the same bully puplit, and the blue checkmark next to his name on Twitter isn’t likely to vanish any time soon.
If anything it is likely that Brennan will step up his invective, now that his mortal foe in the White House has slighted him.
As for the whole brouhaha over ex-cabinet members having security clearance, yes, tradition dictates that top-level advisers who served in the previous administration retain the ability to access sensitive materials so that they may advise the new president. But how likely was it that Trump was ever going to seek advice from John Brennan?
Consider also that as late as June 2017, Hillary Clinton and her top aides still had State Department security clearances.
Maybe it is high time to begin a new — and safer — tradition.