President Trump tweeted Monday morning that he hopes former CIA Director John Brennan will sue over the stripping of his security clearance, saying that would make it "very easy" to view his texts and other communications.
Brennan said on NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday that he's willing to take the president to court, if it would prevent current and former intelligence officials from similarly having their clearances stripped. The White House says the president isof a number of other current and former such officials.
White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Brennan's clearance was stripped following erratic behavior and untruthfulness, although Mr. Trump, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, linked the pulling of Brennan's clearance to the Russia probe. Mr. Trump connected Brennan and the Russia investigation again Monday morning.
"I hope John Brennan, the worst CIA Director in our country's history, brings a lawsuit," the president tweeted Monday. "It will then be very easy to get all of his records, texts, emails and documents to show not only the poor job he did, but how he was involved with the Mueller Rigged Witch Hunt. He won't sue!"
"Everybody wants to keep their Security Clearance, it's worth great prestige and big dollars, even board seats, and that is why certain people are coming forward to protect Brennan," the president said in a follow-up tweet. "It certainly isn't because of the good job he did! He is a political 'hack.'"
The president also appeared to question Attorney General Jeff Sessions' leadership of the Justice Department, as DOJ official Bruce Ohr still has a job. Mr. Trump has said he believes Ohr's clearance will also be revoked "quickly."
Ohr has come under Republican scrutiny for his connections to Glenn Simpson, a co-founder of Fusion GPS, which is the opposition research firm hired former British spy Christopher Steele during the 2016 presidential campaign. Ohr's wife, Nellie, worked for Fusion GPS during the campaign.
"Will Bruce Ohr, whose family received big money for helping to create the phony, dirty and discredited Dossier, ever be fired from the Jeff Sessions "Justice" Department? A total joke!" Mr. Trump tweeted.
Brennan, who was highly critical of Mr. Trump prior to his security clearance being pulled, has continued to be a vocal critic of the president and the White House, suggesting Mr. Trump is "drunk on power."
"The fact that he's using a security clearance of a former CIA director as a pawn in his public relations strategy I think is just so reflective of somebody who, quite frankly, I don't want to use this term maybe, but he's drunk on power," Brennan told MSNBC's Rachel Maddow on Friday.
Former CIA Director and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta warned that security clearances could be used as a "political tool" by Mr. Trump.
"Security clearances are critical to our national security and decisions regarding security clearances ought to be based on national security issues," Panetta told CBS' "Face the Nation" moderator Margaret Brennan in an interview that aired Sunday.
"Our concern now is that security clearances are going to be used as a political tool to go after people that the president doesn't agree with or issues that the president may not agree with and we think that undermines the importance of security clearances particularly when it comes to national security."
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