Jared Kushner, one of the president’s top advisers, has been granted permanent security clearance after a months-long FBI background check process, according to the New York Times.
The White House has said that Kushner’s security clearance took so long simply because the president’s son-in-law had complicated finances and many contacts with foreigners.
The special counsel investigation did examine Kushner’s meetings with Russian officials and other foreign investors around the same time he lost his security clearance, prompting some to think that Kushner’s security clearance was held up for so long because the investigation had uncovered evidence of wrongdoing that would make him a threat to security. At the time, the Washington Post had reported that officials in a number of countries, including China and the UAE, had discussed ways to manipulate Kushner, in some cases through his past business ties. Now it’s unclear whether the FBI resolved those concerns.
“With respect to the news about his clearances, as we stated before, his application was properly submitted, reviewed by numerous career officials and underwent the normal process,” Kushner’s attorney said in a statement to the Times.
Kushner had been operating under an interim clearance that allowed him to see the daily intelligence brief for the president, according to the Times. In February, White House chief of staff John Kelly downgraded those staffers with provisional top secret clearances—including Kushner—to secret clearance.