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Letter to the Hon. Andrew McCabe, Acting Director of the FBI - Seeking FBI Scrutiny of Ivanka Trump's Security Clearance

Dear Acting Director McCabe:

We are writing to request that the Federal Bureau of Investigation conduct a review of a potentially serious issue involving First Daughter and Assistant to the President, Ivanka Trump. As a member of the White House staff and close adviser to the president, Ms. Trump applied for a security clearance, and, as a result, was required to disclose her own foreign contacts as well as those of her spouse and siblings.

Section 19 of the security clearance questionnaire for federal officials - known as Standard Form 86 (SF-86) - asks whether "you or any member of you immediate family in the past seven years had any contact with a foreign government, its establishment (such as embassy, consulate, agency, military service, intelligence or security service, etc.) or its representatives, whether inside or outside the U.S.?" Knowingly falsifying or concealing information on a SF-86 questionnaire is a felony, punishable by up to five years in prison.

Lack of candor, particularly regarding contacts with Russian officials, has been a significant issue for the Trump administration. We learned last week that Ms. Trump's husband, Jared Kushner, and brother Donald Trump Jr. met with Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya and others, including a former Russian counter intelligence officer, for the purpose of obtaining damaging information about Hillary Clinton. Mr. Trump Jr. initially denied any such meeting, and no mention of it was made on Mr. Kushner's initial security clearance questionnaire. Since his first filing, Mr. Kushner has had to update his SF-86 multiple times to reflect over 100 meetings or phone calls, including with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and Russian banker Sergey Gorkov, according to reports. It was also reported in May that Mr. Kushner met with Kislyak to establish a back channel with the Kremlin.

We are concerned that Ivanka Trump may have engaged in similar deception. For example, did she disclose her husband's meeting with Kislyak and Gorkov? Did she disclose her brother's and husband's meeting with Veselnitskaya? Did she accurately disclose her own foreign contacts in her initial filing, which reports suggest may be numerous? If in fact she did accurately disclose these meetings, who at the White House knew of Mr. Kushner's and Mr. Trump Jr's multiple contacts with Russian officials before they were made public? And, most importantly, did she discuss any of these meetings with the President, and, if so, when?

To date, Ms. Trump and her husband Jared Kushner have played an influential role in her father's administration. Ms. Trump even took her father's place at the head table with world leaders at the Group of 20 summit in Hamburg. Between them, the couple have been assigned expansive policy portfolios, even as they maintain a business empire that relies on foreign financing and manufacturing. The juxtaposition of their public and private roles may be murky and confused, but her obligation to disclose her families' and her foreign contacts is not.

The high standard to which we hold public servants, particularly senior advisers to the President of the United States, requires that these questions be raised, and promptly answered.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.


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