Democrats seek suspension of Jared Kushner s security clearance, pending Russia




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Democrats seek suspension of Jared Kushner’s security clearance, pending Russia probe

WATCH Jared Kushner meets with Netanyahu on first day of Middle East trip

House Democrats are raising concerns about the security clearance held by President Trump ’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner. saying suspicions about his contacts with Russian officials should be enough to suspend his access to sensitive information.

“When there are credible allegations that employees may be unfit to continue accessing classified information, security clearances are supposed to be suspended while the allegations are investigated,” wrote Rep. Elijah Cummings. the ranking Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, in a letter to White House chief of staff Reince Priebus. “Mr. Kushner reportedly failed to disclose contacts with dozens of foreign officials on his security clearance application.”

Aides to Kushner did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the letter from Cummings and the other Democrats on the Oversight Committee, which was accompanied by a demand for Kushner’s security clearance application and for “all documents and communications referring or relating to Mr. Kushner’s contacts or communications with Russian government officials or business representatives.” Cummings’ letter is the latest in a drumbeat of efforts by Democrats in Congress. More than 40 members wrote with similar concerns in May.

A White House spokesperson declined to comment.

As a senior adviser to Trump and as someone tasked with helping orchestrate Middle East peace talks, Kushner likely has access to highly sensitive intelligence. According to the letter, his top-secret clearance is temporary, pending a routine screening by the FBI.

The FBI has not identified Kushner as a target of its investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, recently taken over by special counsel Robert Mueller. Sources familiar with a parallel probe by the Senate Intelligence Committee, however, have confirmed to ABC News that Kushner’s previously undisclosed meetings with Russian officials have drawn the attention of its investigators. Senate investigators have requested documents from Kushner and are negotiating with him to arrange an interview. Through his attorney, Kushner has indicated his desire to cooperate with that probe.

The challenge to Kushner’s security clearance comes as the White House is facing questions about its decision to continue to allow retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn to access to the nation’s most carefully guarded secrets when he served as Trump’s national security adviser, even after Department of Justice officials warned that Flynn may have been susceptible to blackmail by Russian diplomats. The New York Times reported Wednesday that, for three weeks before he was fired, Flynn sat in on the most sensitive intelligence briefings in the White House.

He has denied anything improper occurred during his contacts with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. and sources close to Flynn have told ABC News they consider it ludicrous that anyone could have concluded he was vulnerable to blackmail.

Cummings, however, takes issue with the administration’s decision to continue allowing Flynn access to sensitive information after Justice Department lawyers notified the White House of their concerns.

“Concerns about Gen. Flynn’s false statements — as well as his concealment of communications with the Russian ambassador — raised obvious security concerns that should have resulted in an immediate suspension of his clearance while an investigation of the allegations proceeded,” Cummings wrote.

Kushner’s lawyer Jamie Gorelick. a deputy attorney general under Bill Clinton, said that on Jan. 18, Kushner filed an extensive security questionnaire known as the SF86, with an offer the next day to the FBI to provide omitted details of his Russian contacts during his background check interview by agents in person, The New York Times reported.

The SF86 requires applicants for security clearances to disclose — under criminal penalty for significant omissions — minute details of their life, including specific dates and purposes of foreign travel and any “close and/or continuing contact” with foreign nationals or receipt of foreign payments in the previous seven years.

The fact that Kushner received an interim security clearance despite failing to disclose all his contacts with the Russian ambassador and a Kremlin-owned bank is very unusual, according to one legal expert.

“It’s highly out of the ordinary for how it’s supposed to be done,” said Bradley Moss, a national security lawyer who handles cases involving intelligence community workers’ clearance problems.

Investigators conducting government background checks for those applying for top-secret clearances understand that people make mistakes on their SF86 disclosures and sometimes have to submit supplemental information, but Moss said he has never heard of an interim clearance being given to anyone who failed to disclose contacts with a foreign government.

“If Kushner’s clearance is still being adjudicated and there is this red flag of his failure to properly report numerous contacts with foreign government officials on his SF86, that would be major matter of concern, in terms of him being in charge of this mission to the Middle East,” Moss said.

Cummings and other House Democrats have no power to force the administration to rescind Kushner’s clearance. Trump has final word on who gets a security clearance when it comes to his staff, as the chief executive, by law, is the ultimate authority.


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Brian Barry Prize in Political Science #academy #of #political #science


Brian Barry Prize in Political Science

The Brian Barry Prize, worth £2500, is awarded annually for excellence in political science, as displayed in an unpublished essay.

The award is made in partnership with Cambridge University Press and the British Journal of Political Science in honour of Brian Barry, a distinguished Fellow of the Academy and founding editor of the Journal. The winning entry will be published in the British Journal of Political Science . The prize was first awarded in 2014.

Professor Brian Barry FBA (1936-2009) was a distinguished moral and political philosopher, widely credited with having fruitfully brought together analytic philosophy and political science, political theory and social choice theory. In 1988 he was elected a Fellow of the British Academy, to which he gave valuable service.

Eligible submissions must be an essay that has not been previously published and is not under consideration for publication elsewhere. The essay can address any topic in political science, as covered by the British Journal of Political Science . but essays in fields related to the work of Brian Barry will be especially welcome. Essays may be submitted by anyone in possession of a first degree. Entries should be 8,000 to 10,000 words, with an abstract of no more than 100 words. Submissions must be in accordance with the Journal’s style sheet. The prize is not open to current employees of the British Academy or Cambridge University Press, or members of the editorial team of the British Journal of Political Science .

Nominating body: S5

Previous Winners

2016 Professor William Roberts Clark, Texas A M University, Professor Matt Golder, Pennsylvania State University, and Professor Sona N. Golder, Pennsylvania State University for ‘An Exit, Voice, and Loyalty Model of Politics’

2015 Dr Parashar Kulkarni. New York University, for ‘Are There Cultural Prerequisites to Effective Property Rights. Evidence from Inheritance Rights of Widows in Colonial India’

2014 Dr Helder De Schutter. KU Leuven, and Dr Lea Ypi. LSE, for ‘Mandatory Citizenship for Immigrants’


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Bachelor s Degree – Degree in Political Science #masters #degree #political


Bachelor of Science in Political Science

Please Note: Undergraduate classes moved to a semester calendar beginning Fall 2016. Learn more here .

Pursue Your Passion for Politics

If you are interested in politics, history, law, government, or journalism, then a degree in political science might be right for you. The Bachelor of Science in Political Science degree program examines political institutions, the social and economic forces that shape them, the cultural context within which they operate, and human behavior in political matters. As a political science major, you will hone your analytical and problem-solving abilities and improve your communication skills.

Featuring courses in American government, comparative politics, international relations, political theory, and foreign policy, this dynamic program allows you the freedom to tailor your degree by choosing from several open electives. In addition to providing a solid foundation for continuing on to graduate school, a bachelor’s degree in political science can lead to an exciting career in government, law, business, education, or politics.

Put Your Degree to Work

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a majority of those with bachelor’s degrees in political science find employment in niche areas with specialized titles, such as market analyst, research assistant, writer, or policy analyst. Generally speaking, the job outlook for political scientists is very promising, as the field is projected to continue growing over the next several years.

Interested in learning more about our bachelor’s degrees and the pace yourself format? View our recently filmed webinar .


Please note: The College of Professional Studies undergraduate programs will operate on a semester academic calendar in fall 2016. Read more.

Students who started this program prior to Fall 2015 should follow the curriculum reflected on their manual degree audit, which can be obtained by contacting their academic advisor .

General Foundation Courses (18 s.h.)

Admissions Requirements

Below are the official Admissions Requirements for this program.

  • Online application
  • Academic transcripts: submit one of the following
    • Official high school degree
    • Official GED
    • Official associate degree showing degree conferral and date
  • Transfer credit documentation : should be submitted with your application material
    • Academic transcripts from each institution you previously attended:
      • Official U.S. transcripts: if you applied previously earned credit toward your earned associate degree, you must request transcripts from each institution you attended.
      • Official foreign transcripts: must include English translation. We encourage you to submit a course-by-course evaluation of your diploma(s) and transcript(s)
    • College-level examinations: official examination score(s)
    • Military evaluation
  • Proof of English language proficiency: ONLY for students for whom English is not their primary language: English language proficiency guidelines

For general admissions information and recommended admissions deadlines, Undergraduate Admissions.

All requirements must be received prior to review.


Estimated total tuition for this program is $62,280.00 .

Tuition for individual courses is based on the number of semester hours. Most courses are 3-4 semester hours. See Undergraduate Tuition Rates for details.

Use our Tuition Calculator below to see if transfer credit or tuition reimbursement from your employer could reduce your total tuition.

Tuition Calculator

Please note: The estimated total tuition is based on tuition rates for Academic Year 2017-18 and does not include any fees or other expenses. Some courses and labs have tuition rates that may increase or decrease total tuition. Tuition and fees are subject to revision by the president and Board of Trustees at any time.

*A maximum of 9 quarter hours of graduate- or doctoral-level credit obtained at another institution may be awarded as Advanced Graduate Credit to the Doctor of Education program.

Student Profile

Who Will Your Classmates Be?

This Bachelor of Science in Political Science degree program is well suited for students who wish to continue on to graduate school or pursue a career in law, public administration, or politics.

Careers to consider include:

  • Political scientist
  • Lobbyist
  • Market or survey researcher
  • Judicial worker
  • Legal assistant
  • Intelligence officer
  • High school government teacher
  • Policy or legislative analyst
  • Journalist

Learning Outcomes

Program Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Specialized Knowledge
    Interpret political events, theories, perspectives, scholarly works, and public policies over time and in the context of various political systems.
  2. Broad and Integrative Knowledge
    Describe and evaluate an issue related to contemporary political phenomena in a wider social context by employing interdisciplinary perspectives from political science, philosophy, and sociology.
  3. Applied and Collaborative Learning
    Complete a substantial project that evaluates a significant question in political science, including an analytic narrative of the effects of learning outside the classroom on the research or practical skills employed in executing the project.
  4. Civic and Global Learning
    Explain diverse positions, including those representing different cultural, economic, and geographic interests, on a contested public issue, and evaluate the issue in light of both those interests and evidence drawn from journalism and scholarship.
  5. Experiential Learning
    Integrate acquired political science skills, principles, best practices, techniques, and tools to respond to a challenge in the community or workplace.

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President Trump, first lady host governors for dinner at White House




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President Trump, first lady host first ball at White House

WATCH President Trump, first lady host governors for dinner at White House

While Hollywood rolls out the red carpet for the Oscars tonight, the president and first lady hosted a night of glamour of their own. But instead of movie stars, the guests at the White House tonight were the nation’s governors.

It’s an annual tradition for the president to invite the nation’s governors to the White House for a dinner. Tonight’s Governor’s Ball was a first for President Trump and first lady Melania Trump as host and hostess at the White House for a gala event.

“I hear this is a record number of governors, 46, and that’s the highest that have ever showed up for this evening,” the commander in chief said during a toast.

The theme of the dinner was Spring’s Renewal, with the first lady saying in a statement, “The scents of jasmine and roses fill the air as we give thanks for this great nation and the glory of renewal.”

She also said the night will be an opportunity to leave political labels behind and unite.

“I am proud to invite all the governors to the White House for this important annual event,” Melania Trump said. “Tonight, we come together as one nation, leaving political labels and partisan interests behind.”

However, Donald Trump briefly touted the accomplishments of his young presidency, highlighting border security, saying, “I can say that after four weeks, it’s been a lot of fun accomplished, but we’ve accomplished almost everything we’ve started out to accomplish. The borders are stricter, tighter.”

He teased the group’s upcoming discussion of former President Obama’s signature legislative achievement, the Affordable Care Act.

“Tomorrow we’re going to meet, and we’re going discuss things like perhaps health care will come up, perhaps, and I think we’ve made a lot of progress on that, and we’re going to have a speech Tuesday night, and we’re going to be speaking very specifically about a very complicated subject,” Trump said. “We’re going to have it fixed, and we’re going to repeal and replace, and I think you’re going to see something very special.”


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What does Thailand s political situation mean for travellers? Lonely Planet

#travelling to thailand

What does Thailand’s political situation mean for travellers?

by Austin Bush Nov 20 2014

On 22 May 2014, Thailand’s military seized control of the government in a self-professed effort to ‘reform the political structure, the economy and the society.’ Nearly six months on, the junta continues to rule Thailand, having formed a military-heavy national legislature headed by Prayuth Chan-ocha, himself the former Commander in Chief of the Royal Thai Army.

Coups are nothing new in Thailand – this is the country’s 12th since 1932 – but the current situation has understandably left travellers with a few questions.

Pin this image Riot police, Bangkok. Image by Austin Bush / Lonely Planet

Is it safe to travel to Thailand amid its politcal uncertainty?

In a word, yes. Although there’s always a risk that the political situation could escalate – immediately following the coup there were heated anti-military protests, and a potentially violent backlash by pro-government supporters is possible – at the time of writing Thailand’s political situation does not generally make the country any less safe to visit.

So what does the military coup mean for travellers?

Despite the military’s declaration of nationwide martial law (which effectively rendered the Thai constitution null and void), daily life more or less continues as usual in Bangkok and elsewhere in Thailand: tourist attractions are still open, and tourism-related businesses and services remain operational. Indeed, in a highly unusual public relations campaign called ‘24 Hours Enjoy Thailand’, the Thai military claimed that martial law should be seen as a draw for tourists, as, according to them, the situation makes the country safe for travellers 24 hours a day. Yet there are a few issues that could impact travellers directly:

Related articles:

  • Public criticism of the coup or military, including ‘liking’ or sharing via online social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, is best avoided. Even before the coup, Thailand was home to some of the world’s strictest laws barring criticism of its monarchy, an entity with longstanding and close ties to the military.
  • Two unique methods of protest, specifically, prominently reading or displaying the classic George Orwell novel, Nineteen Eighty-Four. and sandwich eating (yes, you read that right) have been banned, and travellers should avoid doing either of these in an overtly provocative manner.
  • Restrictions on media mean that some foreign news outlets have been blocked.
  • Travellers have been advised to check the specific terms of their travel insurance, as claims arising from military insurrection are common exclusions in travel insurance policies. In response to this, the Tourism Authority of Thailand has created Thailand Travel Shield ( ), a low-cost travel insurance supplement.

It’s worth mentioning that some of the junta’s actions – ostensibly efforts to win the hearts and minds of foreign visitors – have had a positive impact on tourism in Thailand. On the island of Phuket. taxi and tuk-tuk rings with links to organised crime have been disbanded, beach vendors and jet skis have been banned, and illegal beach structures have been torn down. In a move that will be welcomed by some travellers, beach parties in Surat Thani province, with the exception of Ko Pha-Ngan ’s infamous monthly full moon party, were banned by the junta until further notice following the murders of two British backpackers on Ko Tao in September 2014.

How it got to this: the coup in context

It’s a long and confusing saga, but the roots of this most recent coup can be traced back to conflicts between the largely middle- and upper-class, Bangkok-based monarchist ‘yellow shirts’ and the predominately poorer, working class ‘red shirt’ supporters of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra.

In 2006, Shinawatra was forced from office in a bloodless military coup. In response, red-shirted Thaksin supporters took over sections of central Bangkok and staged a series of anti-government demonstrations, some of which turned violent. The protesters were eventually dispersed by the Thai military in May 2010, resulting in 40 deaths.

In 2011, after a succession of interim governments, Thaksin’s sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, became prime minister in a landslide victory for her party. Two years later, yellow shirt protesters accusing Yingluck of corruption launched a series of anti-government protests culminating in Yingluck being forced to stand down and, on 22 May 2014, a yellow shirt-sympathetic military seizing power. In July, a military-dominated national legislature was created, which later designated former Army chief Prayuth Chan-ocha as Thailand’s 29th prime minister.

How long will this last?

At this point, it’s still too early to say. At the time of writing, there was no confirmation on when martial law would be lifted, and the military had not yet divulged a timeline for a return to civilian rule.

This article was first published in May 2014, and updated in November 2014.


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