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Jared Kushner. Photo: Al Drago-Pool/Getty Images

In May 2018, President Trump ordered chief of staff John Kelly to give Jared Kushner a top secret clearance against the warnings of intelligence officials, prompting Kelly and then-White House counsel Don McGahn to draft internal memos recording the episode, the New York Times reports, citing four people briefed on the matter.

Why it matters: Kushner up until that point only had a temporary clearance, with the White House's personnel security office having delayed the process for unknown reasons. Media reports have suggested that Kushner's foreign business dealings had sparked concerns among officials about whether to allow him access to top secret intelligence. In a January interview with the Times, Trump said he was "never involved" with the process of finally granting Kushner a clearance.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
14 mins ago - Economy & Business

GM's shrinking deal with Nikola

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

General Motors will no longer take an equity stake in Nikola Corp. or build its pickup truck, under a revised deal that still envisions GM as a key tech supplier for Nikola's planned line of electric and fuel cell heavy trucks.

Driving the news: The revised agreement Monday is smaller in scope than a draft partnership rolled out in September that had included a $2 billion stake in the startup and an agreement to build its Badger pickup.

1 hour ago - Technology

Exclusive: Facebook's blackout didn't dent political ad reach

Photo: Valera Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Americans saw more political ads on Facebook in the week before the 2020 election than they did the prior week despite the company's blackout on new political ads during that period, according to Global Witness, a human rights group that espouses tech regulation.

Why it matters: The presidential election was a key stress test for Facebook and other leading online platforms looking to prove that they can curb misinformation. Critics contend measures like the ad blackout barely made a dent.

Wall Street wonders how bad it has to get

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Wall Street is working out how bad the economy will have to get for Congress to feel motivated to move on economic support.

Why it matters: A pre-Thanksgiving data dump showed more evidence of a floundering economic recovery. But the slow drip of crumbling economic data may not be enough to push Washington past a gridlock to halt the economic backslide.