All Eyes on Kushner as Questions Arise About Security Clearance and Russian Social Media "Bots"

Steve Bannon, chief strategist for President-elect Donald Trump, left, talks with Jared Kushner before the start of a President-elect Donald Trump's news conference in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York, Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Everything just keeps pointing back to Jared Kushner.

That, at least, seems to be the case, as more voices, on both sides of the aisle, begin to call out for Kushner to lose his security clearance.


During the run up to the election, social media saw a flood of “egg people” supporting Donald Trump. That support included pushing a lot of the conspiracy theories against Hillary Clinton.

I’ve talked about the “egg people” before. Those were the near-anonymous posters to places like Twitter, usually with no profile picture – only an egg – and names like, Trumpgirl32344 or MAGA99279 (they almost always have a string of numbers behind their Twitter names). They usually have a handful of followers (often less than 20), and follow even fewer.

These egg people are actually “bots,” and the belief is that most originate from Russian sources.

The question now is whether Jared Kushner, who ran Trump’s digital campaign operation, coordinated with those Russian bots during the campaign, in order to further promote his father-in-law.

Kushner has had to turn in two amendments to his security clearance paperwork, so far, and there are many who say enough is enough.

Most of the attacks on Kushner have been partisan, but even some Republicans fed up with the drama surrounding Trump’s family are now calling for Kushner’s exit.

“I’m going out on a limb here, but I would say that I think it would be in the president’s best interest if he removed all of his children from the White House — not only Donald [Jr.], but Ivanka [Trump] and Jared Kushner,” Rep. Bill Flores, a Texas Republican, told KBTX-TV on Thursday.


Donald Trump Jr. has no role in the White House, now, but his actions as a surrogate for his father during the campaign have got him neck-deep in the most recent Russia firestorm.

And speaking of partisan:

“It’s very hard for me to imagine anyone else being allowed to continue their clearance if they participated in a meeting like the one that just became public,” Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, told The Hill in an interview.

Schiff is also probing whether the Trump campaign’s analytics operation made any attempt to help Russian social media trolls push negative stories about Clinton to certain valuable segments of voters. He declined to name Kushner specifically, but the first son-in-law headed that arm of the campaign. The data and digital director for the campaign, Brad Parscale, said Friday that he will speak to the panel as part of its investigation.

Let’s be honest: Most already knew how awful Clinton was. She was a corrupt, bumbling mess. That’s how she lost. The problem was with the flood of “extras” that had no basis in reality.

In the lead-up to Election Day, a loose network of hackers, bloggers and other online figures helped spread false and negative reports about Clinton on Twitter and Facebook to million of voters living in key states, cities and precincts.

The network used armies of social media “bots,” that run automated functions, to accelerate the spread of reports.

Investigators are looking into whether Russia identified its targets with the help of the Trump campaign’s cyber operation, which had detailed information about voters, according to McClatchy.


And all too often, we’ve seen, and will continue to see this painted as a partisan issue, rather than an American issue.


It didn’t happen.

Blood orgies and “spirit-cooking”?

The ramblings of the intellectually void.

And very likely the workings of those without the best interests of our nation at heart.

We were going to be royally screwed, no matter who won the 2016 election. We didn’t need the help of a hostile foreign government. If someone from Trump’s camp did, indeed, employee the help of Russian “bots,” that needs to be investigated, as well.



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