Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Pence Expresses 'Great Confidence' in John Kelly Amid Rob Porter Scandal

Pence Expresses 'Great Confidence' in John Kelly Amid Rob Porter Scandal

"It gives the administration, I hate to say it, a black eye, and these were awful instances", Rove told FOX Business' Trish Regan on "The Intelligence Report". "Everyone knows that. And it nearly wouldn't even have to be said", Trump said.

What did you know, and when did you know it?

The tepid statement avoided commenting specifically on the women allegedly abused by Rob Porter.

The South Carolina Republican, who is not running for re-election in 2018, asked the White House to clarify when staffers learned of the allegations against Rob Porter.

Politico reported Wednesday that dozens of senior Trump White House officials are still operating under "temporary" or "provisional" clearances. The FBI closed their investigation in January.

Gowdy's oversight committee penned a letter to the White House on Wednesday morning and released it on Twitter. President Trump's White House has stressed that background checks are handled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other intelligence agencies through the same process that administrations have relied on for decades.

The Daily Mail first printed allegations that the president's staff secretary had a history of spousal abuse on 6 February.

He did not say who requested the follow-up.

Gowdy also says he wants to understand how someone with credible allegations of domestic violence in his past could hold one of the top jobs in the White House for more than a year.

It could explain why he has repeatedly emphasised that those professing their innocence require "due process" and shouldn't be quickly condemned.

It is playing out with the Porter scandal, as the men hired by Trump apparently made the call that the career of a Harvard-educated Rhodes Scholar should not be derailed just because of a few domestic-abuse allegations and a protective order granted to one of his ex-wives. Trump has denied the accusations and has accused Democrats and the news media of orchestrating a smear campaign.

But the biggest issue for Trump and Kelly, Stone told LifeZette on Tuesday night, is who will replace Kelly.

Officials familiar with the process have said complicated background checks and a backlog at the start of an administration have slowed the clearance process. "I have real questions about how someone like this could be considered for employment", Gowdy said on CNN's "New Day" on Wednesday, adding that "the chronology is not favorable for the White House". "Of course that includes white supremacists, KKK, Neo-Nazi, and all extremist groups".

President Donald Trump introduces Enda Kenny, the Taoiseach of Ireland, to Wilbur Ross, U.S. Secretary of Commerce, in the West Wing Lobby on Thursday, March 16, 2017, upon the Prime Minister's arrival to the White House.

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