Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner was recently revealed as one in a lengthening line of administration members who left important information off high-level security clearance application forms. Kushner, like his father-in-law’s associate Michael T. Flynn, didn’t disclose all his contacts with foreign nationals — including the Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya. She met with Kushner, Paul Manafort, and Donald Trump Jr. in June 2016, which has since blown up in Don Jr.’s face. But Veselnitskaya is just one of a hundred names that Kushner has now submitted to the government as critics call for his security clearance to be revoked.
The update comes months after it became public knowledge that Kushner hadn’t been entirely forthcoming about the people he’d been in touch with. Back in April, the New York Times reported that Kushner had left numerous contacts off Standard Form 86, which is used by the government to vet federal employees and appointees and ensure there is no funny business with foreign entities. At the time, Kushner said that the names he left off his form were simply errors chalked up to memory and rushing to file the appropriate documents. However, that becomes a little harder to believe now that he has updated his list with the feds three times and has now included 100 people in his list of foreign contacts.
One of the names Kushner left off his list included the head of Russian bank Vnesheconombank. More significant was the omission of a meeting with Russian ambassador, Sergey I. Kislyak, with whom Attorney General Jeff Session also met and also forgot to include on his own Form 86. That led to his recusal from the Senate’s investigation into the Trump administration’s ties to Russia. Michael T. Flynn fared worse — he not only had his security clearance revoked but was ousted for not disclosing phone calls with Kislyak. Now Veselnitskaya has been added, too, only after the Times revealed Donald Trump Jr. may have been motivated to take the meeting in hopes they would get compromising information on Hillary Clinton.
These details come from sources close to Kushner and his associates, as Kushner’s Form 86 and its updates aren’t a public document. In fact, an ethics watchdog is currently in the process of suing the Justice Department over an unfulfilled Freedom of Information Act request for Jeff Sessions’ form. There’s good reason for public interest in Sessions’ contacts, and, although he isn’t the head of a federal department, that’s even more true of Kushner. Knowing who Kushner has met with would have implications far beyond the Senate’s investigation into whether Trump administration colluded with Russia.
(Via New York Times)