Will Trump Get Clearance Investigation?


In most cases, a President-elect is a member of government and already has an existing security clearance. For Donald Trump, we’ve got a very different situation. While some would say Trump has essentially been “vetted” by the public and media, he’s also been highly secretive of his foreign influence and financial history. The allegations of sexual assault would also raise flags to an adjudicator for an average worker.

Does this group think that Trump will actually undergo a clearance investigation, or has he already been vetted by public opinion? Secondly, if investigators uncover things on Trump that would normally raise red flags for an average worker, would they pose problems for the President-elect?


We’ve covered the topic of politicians/congressional security clearances pretty extensively on the news site. Here’s a good article: https://news.clearancejobs.com/2016/07/25/kind-security-clearance-president-get/. The president is essentially responsible for setting security and classification policy. As the person who establishes security clearance policy, the president is in a unique position. But even members of congress don’t go through a traditional security clearance investigation the way the average worker does. (Hence this article: https://news.clearancejobs.com/2016/08/21/5-members-of-congress-who-could-never-get-a-security-clearance/). Trump won’t undergo a traditional security clearance - he has been vetted by the vote of the people and the press.


Political appointees such as the President, VEEP, and members of Congress are not granted clearances but rather are given access to classified information based on their position and a need to know. All sign nondisclosure agreements prior to getting access. So no, the incoming President-elect will not under-go any new type of background investigation. It would be an interesting exercise for an adjudicator if they did have to review all of the possible issues that have already been uncovered.