Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions hinted that he might use lie detectors to find who is leaking top secret information to reporters from within the National Security Council (NSC).
Sessions is thinking about issuing polygraph tests in an effort to find which NSC staffers leaked Trump’s first phone calls with the Mexican President and an Australian official earlier this year. Details of the conversations were shared with the press by an unnamed source in January after Trump took office. The Washington Post got access to the full transcripts and published them this summer.
Sessions is interested in those two calls because just a handful of people had access to them. This could help the former Alabama Senator to narrow down the hunt for leakers within the Trump administration.
Sources couldn’t tell if the lie detector tests could lead to firings, but they could deter leakers from disclosing classified information from now on.
It’s Unclear if McMaster Was Consulted
The Attorney General floated the idea during a brief meeting with White House officials. It wasn’t immediately clear if he had discussed the plan with Trump’s national security adviser H.R. McMaster or Trump. The idea came to Sessions’ mind after The Post published the said transcripts in early August.
Axios was the first to learn about the lie detector tests.
Last month, Sessions disclosed that the Department of Justice had launched thrice as many investigations into the White House leaks than the previous administration. At the time, he threatened to bring criminal charges against the leakers.
He added that he strongly agrees with Trump on curbing the “staggering number of leaks” preventing the U.S. government from doing its job and keeping the country safe.
The news about the polygraph testing came just days after Sessions and the White House took a “very weak” stance on the issue and the pending investigations.