CNN legal analyst Susan Hennessey on Friday issued a stark warning about the sweeping new powers that President Donald Trump has given to Attorney General Bill Barr to declassify intelligence related to the investigation on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
During an appearance on CNN, Hennessey argued that Trump has given Barr the power to selectively declassify intelligence in order to build a misleading narrative about the origins of the Russia investigation, which she said would be unprecedented in American history.
“This actually is representing something quite dangerous,” she argued. “Ordinarily, whenever we think about sources and methods and classified information and what information the United States government wants to protect, the concerns that we’re worried about are national security concerns and not political concerns. One of the things that’s so alarming is that the president has decided to shift this authority from the director of national intelligence to the attorney general.”
She then outlined why the DNI has traditionally been placed in charge of handling intelligence declassification and how dangerous it could be to give those powers over to someone who is only looking to protect the president.
“The idea that the president would put this new authority with the attorney general, someone who is not best positioned to understand the consequences of declassifying… this is not about the protection of national security, but the potential political benefits,” she said.
Watch the video below.
Trump spokesperson goes down in flames up against progressive reporter: ‘All you do is lie!’
President Donald Trump's spokesperson Kayleigh McEnany went down in flames up against Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks during a CNN panel Wednesday.
McEnany went on to try and spin the president as some sort of great leader for Black Americans. She said that the campaign is very "proud" of the president's record on issues involving people of color.
"He also just said he wouldn't change his position on the Central Park Five," cut in Cuomo.
McEnany tried to cut in, but Cuomo cut in. "Now, he said we'll leave it at that. Come on."
"Chris, you come — come on, you," McEnany shot back. "We've been talking about the Central Park Five and racism and all of these things going back to the 2016 election, problem -- American people didn't believe it."
CNN analyst demolishes White House’s latest attempt to stonewall Congress: ‘There is no provision for this immunity’
Ahead of former White House Communications Director Hope Hicks being called to Congress to testify about former special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation — during which she was, by all accounts, less than helpful — the Trump administration took the unprecedented step of advising Congress that Hicks was given "immunity" from talking to them by the president.
On CNN's "The Situation Room," national security analyst Shawn Turner demolished this legal strategy.
John Dean explains the big mistake Hope Hicks made by stonewalling Congress
Former White House counsel John Dean, a key figure in the Watergate scandal, said Wednesday on CNN that there was a serious flaw in the attempt to prevent longtime Trump confidant Hope Hicks from testifying to Congress.
White House lawyers have asserted that Hicks has absolute immunity and is not legally required to testify about her time as Trump's director of communications. Hicks testified Wednesday during a closed-door hearing before the House Judiciary Committee — where she reportedly refused to answer questions about her White House job.
"Privilege is not being asserted here. Instead, the White House says that Hicks has absolute immunity regarding the time that she spent at 1600 Pennsylvania. Does absolute immunity even exist? And if so, can you explain to me the difference between the two?" CNN host Brooke Baldwin asked Dean.