(National Sentinel) Executive Branch: Fed up with the unprecedented leaking, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly are set to launch a two-pronged effort to root out the guilty that could include formal charges.
As Fox News reports, the anticipated crack down is the latest sign that the Trump White House seeks to run a tighter ship:
One of the first tasks facing the retired general and former Homeland Security boss will be plugging the leaks at the White House that his predecessor struggled to stanch.
“If Reince [Priebus] couldn’t control those leaks … then he was the one who was ultimately responsible, and General Kelly was brought in to make sure those leaks do not continue,” former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski told “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday.
Kelly has already asserted control over White House staff: On Monday he booted Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci after just 10 days on the job, proving anyone who is causing trouble will quickly be shown the door.
As for those leaking highly sensitive information, the punishment may be a lot more severe:
But beyond the White House effort to halt nettlesome leaks about behind-the-scenes feuding, Sessions is expected to go further with an announcement on criminal leak investigations — specifically, concerning news reports that published sensitive intelligence material, according to officials who have been briefed on the matter.
Sessions plans to hold a press conference on leaks on Friday. The announcement may provide more of an overview of what the DOJ hopes to accomplish rather than specific prosecutions at this stage, Fox News is told.
Republicans on the Senate’s homeland security committee warned the Trump White House in a report last month that it was facing an “alarming” number of leaks and that was posing major national security threats. Titled “State Secrets: How an Avalanche of Media Leaks is Harming National Security,” the 24-page report estimated that the Trump administration was suffering an average one leak per day.
In the report, the authors said the Justice Department should do more to find out who is leaking and deal with them.
“General Kelly has come in, he’s going to change, he’s going to pivot, he’s going to make sure he is the chief of staff. Not the chief of the president,” Lewandowski said. “What he’s going to do is he’s going to bring that staff together.”
He added that Kelly will “restore order” because the former Marine general was brought over from DHS specifically to make sure the leaks Priebus couldn’t control would stop.