President-elect Joe Biden and his team will begin receiving daily presidential briefings on Monday, and will soon have access to President Trump’s secret server.
According to CNN, the incoming administration is considering making transcripts of presidential calls with foreign leaders to government workers that meet a required security clearance level. The report comes as the Trump administration is raising concerns that the transcripts could be leaked, an outcome that they say would be a threat to national security.
Sources close to the Biden transition team have said that no decisions have been made about how these sensitive materials will be handled, but assured that any information that is released would be thoroughly vetted for their security threat first.
“The fact is too many people probably had access when Trump came into office — in some ways it was good, but in some ways it can also be bad,” one former administration official close to the transition team said. “Given the politically charged environment we’re in right now, it’s probably wise to maintain some control over it, although maybe not in the form of a secret server.”
There are also concerns among the Trump administration that the information on the server could be used for Biden’s own political gain, including conversations relating to his family and their involvement with politics in Ukraine.
“There’s a lot to cover,” the senior US official said. “We are going to share anything that’s relevant for them to come to grips with reality when the keys are theirs. If there was something like that that’s actually of note… things on the covert side, for example, we will highlight them very quickly.”
Biden has already begun naming appointees to his administration, and many of them are familiar faces who worked in the Obama and Clinton administrations.
Remember the NSC secret server? Biden will inherit it on January 20. Officials tell me the incoming admin is striving for transparency, but may need to assess classified info security before making changes. As for the transcripts & other docs Trump…(1/2) https://t.co/6QajTL6ctb
— Vivian Salama (@vmsalama) November 26, 2020
Biden plans to name his longtime adviser Antony Blinken as secretary of state.
From 2009 to 2013, Blinken served as Deputy Assistant to the President and National Security Advisor to the Vice President. From 2002 to 2008, he served as the Democratic Staff Director for the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
During the Clinton Administration, Blinken served in the State Department and in senior positions on the National Security Council staff. Blinken is also a global affairs analyst for CNN
Jake Sullivan who was one of Hillary Clinton’s closest aides, and implicated in her email scandal, is likely to be named Biden’s national security adviser. Linda Thomas-Greenfield is expected to be nominated to serve as Biden’s ambassador to the United Nations.
On Monday afternoon, The General Services Administration (GSA) announced that the Trump administration is ready to begin the formal transition process into a new Joe Biden administration.
The letter is the first step the administration has taken to acknowledge Joe Biden as the president-elect.
GSA Administrator Emily Murphy sent a letter to the press announcing the breakthrough and saying the agency was not pressured by the Trump administration. She was previously accused of having a conflict of interest and intentionally stalling on the announcement because she is a Trump appointee.
Trump tweeted moments after the letter was reported, thanking Murphy for her work and affirming the decision to start the transition, but also still promised that his team will keep up the fight.