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.
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GOP lawmaker hammers Trump for Ukraine server conspiracy theory: ‘Are we trying to exculpate Russia?’
Rep. Francis Rooney (R-OK) on Friday signaled that he was taking House Democrats' impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump far more seriously than many of his Republican colleagues.
During an interview with CNN's Poppy Harlow, Rooney said he was very disturbed at the president's efforts to prove a debunked conspiracy theory about Ukraine purportedly being behind the hack of the Democratic National Committee in 2016, despite the fact that all evidence that has been uncovered points directly to Russia as the true culprit.
Harlow then asked him what he made about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-CA) comment that "all roads" in the Ukraine scandal lead back to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
‘We’ve entered a shame-free zone’: CNN’s Sciutto appalled by Trump’s ‘mind-boggling’ G7 corruption
CNN's Jim Sciutto on Friday did not mince words when talking about President Donald Trump's decision to host next year's G7 summit at his own golf course in Doral, Florida.
During a segment about the president's multiple corruption scandals, Sciutto described Trump's G7 gambit as the president "explicitly, publicly steering a taxpayer-funded government contract to [his] own business." He then asked former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti to comment on why this scandal might get Trump into hot legal water.
‘We’re ready to vote’: Oversight Committee Dem claims Congress has the goods for impeachment
Appearing on CNN's "New Day," Democratic Rep. Ro Khanna (CA), who sits on the House Oversight Committee, said he and other Democrats have enough in hand to vote on the impeachment of President Donald Trump.
Speaking with host John Berman, Khanna was pressed on what he had learned behind closed doors from former and current officials working in Trump's administration, saying he couldn't divulge any more than has previously been released but that there was enough there to raise serious issues about Trump's continuing as president.
Pressed by host Berman whether lawmakers have enough to proceed with impeachment, the California Democrat didn't skip a beat and said yes.