Following today’s White House press briefing in which White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders acknowledged that the FBI completed its background investigation on ex-staffer Rob Porter last summer but that the White House personnel security office didn’t, Fox News’ Shepard Smith noted that the White House’s timeline keeps shifting.
“Well, there you have it,” Smith stated. “Who knew what and when regarding President Trump’s former senior aide. We don’t have a definitive answer but we do have new information from the White House. A brand new timeline.”
After playing footage of FBI Director Christopher Wray testifying to the Senate that the FBI’s background check on Porter was completed last July, Smith said that the FBI passed information of Porter’s alleged abuse of his ex-wives to the White House at that time. But then added what Sanders explained today.
“The White House says that may be the case, but the information did not make its way through the personnel security office,” the anchor said. “The White House wasn’t fully aware until last week and Porter’s background check is still not finished. That’s what the White House says.”
Stating that knowledge of the domestic abuse allegations getting caught in a bottleneck in the personnel security office was a “new story,” Smith explained we are starting to get the full picture:
“Porter never got a permanent security clearance and based on all that we now know about him, the experts say he never would have. Though the White House has not yet copped to it, the timeline is becoming clear. The FBI told them that Porter was a huge problem last summer yet he stayed on the job until what the FBI became public––what it knew became public. You heard the White House is now claiming that officials didn’t learn what the FBI tried to tell them. Here’s the big picture question. Is the White House covering up for Porter? Did it look the other way because he was doing an important job, in their view, well? There’s more reporting to be done. Today’s brand new account from the White House about the office of personnel security being a bottleneck where accounts of abuse got stalled is not the end.”
Watch the clip above, via Fox News.
[image via screengrab]