A new poll has found that a majority of U.S. voters support former CIA Director John Brennan and former FBI Director James Comey having their security clearances revoked.
The Harvard CAPS/Harris poll, published in The Hill Monday, shows 59 percent of voters feel Brennan should have lost his clearance while 64 percent say Comey should lose his also.
Roughly 60 percent in total also said former national security officials who go on to become news contributors should lose their clearances as well.
“An overwhelming majority of the public thinks that former officials should lose their security clearance, and believe that former officials like Brennan and Coney should no longer have any clearance,” Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll co-director Mark Penn told The Hill. “There would definitely be support for a wholesale policy revoking their clearances.”
The poll, conducted from August 22 to 23, surveyed 1,330 registered voters. Among the participants, 37 percent identified as Democrat, 32 percent identified as Republican, 29 percent as Independent and 2 percent as other.
Brennan, who served as President Obama’s CIA director, had his clearance revoked recently by President Trump.
The former national security official has called the move an attempt by Trump to “suppress freedom of speech & punish critics.”
“This action is part of a broader effort by Mr. Trump to suppress freedom of speech & punish critics,” Brennan said on Twitter. “It should gravely worry all Americans, including intelligence professionals, about the cost of speaking out. My principles are worth far more than clearances. I will not relent.”
In a statement released earlier this month, Trump cited Brennan’s “erratic conduct and behavior” as part of the reason why his clearance was revoked.
“Mr. Brennan has recently leveraged his status as a former high-ranking official with access to highly sensitive information to make a series of unfounded and outrageous allegations – wild outbursts on the internet and television – about this Administration,” Trump said. “Mr. Brennan’s lying and recent conduct, characterized by increasingly frenzied commentary, is wholly inconsistent with access to the Nation’s most closely held secrets and facilitates the very aim of our adversaries, which is to sow division and chaos.”
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