- - Thursday, January 5, 2017

A top White House national security adviser and key proponent of the Obama administration’s diplomacy with Iran is the focus of a congressional inquiry following disclosures the FBI may have denied him top-level security clearances.

Ben Rhodes, a White House deputy national security adviser who led the administration’s efforts to mislead Congress about the terms of the Iran nuclear agreement, is under scrutiny in the wake of disclosures he was declined interim clearance status by the FBI in 2008, when the administration was moving into the White House.

Lawmakers are now concerned that Rhodes’ access to the top levels of government—including its diplomacy with Iran—is inappropriate due to the FBI’s concerns about his past. “Recent reports indicate the FBI denied, or was going to deny, Ben Rhodes an interim security clearance during President Obama’s transition,” Reps. Trent Franks (R., Ariz.) and Jim Bridenstine (R., Okla.) wrote in a recent letter to FBI Director James Comey.


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