White House weighs kicking out Sebastian Gorka

The Daily Beast reports: The Trump administration is actively exploring options to remove controversial national security aide Sebastian Gorka from the White House and place him at another federal agency, multiple sources tell The Daily Beast.

Two senior administration officials familiar with the situation say it is exploring a new role for Gorka elsewhere in the administration. Another said he has been entirely excluded from day-to-day policy-making at the National Security Council in the meantime.

Gorka’s looming departure from the White House, which one of the sources described as imminent, comes amid mounting controversy over his involvement with a far-right Hungarian group notorious for its collaboration with the Nazi regime during the second world war.

Reached by phone on Friday, Gorka requested that questions be sent in an email, to which he did not reply. The White House did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

According to two senior administration officials, the White House has been seeking a position for Gorka that does not require a security clearance. One said it was looking to classify him as a member of the federal government’s senior executive service.

Plans for Gorka’s move have not been finalized, the officials cautioned. And in this White House—with its reputation for turn-on-a-dime decision-making and competing factions—that means Gorka’s status could change.

BuzzFeed News reported on Thursday that Gorka lacked a security clearance as late as last month. His inability to sit in on high-level national security meetings has reportedly made it all but impossible for him to be involved in White House nat-sec policy-making.

Gorka was denied a Hungarian security clearance in 2002 when he sought a position on a government panel investigating the then-prime minister over his role in the country’s secret police during the Soviet occupation of the country, BuzzFeed reported.
Two senior administration officials described Gorka as completely devoid of influence on White House policy, corroborating reports that he “had not been cleared to sit in any sort of national security meetings, which leaves him without much to do all day,” as one former Obama administration official told BuzzFeed. [Continue reading…]

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