A former White House official who was caught up in a controversy over the release of intelligence material to a member of Congress has been hired to work for Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a person familiar with matter said Wednesday.
Ezra Cohen-Watnick, who will advise Sessions on national security matters, left the National Security Council last year after it was reported that he had shown House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes classified documents.
The material allegedly revealed that members of the Obama administration had sought the identities of Trump campaign officials and associates inadvertently caught on government intercepts, in a process known as “unmasking.”
Nunes then revealed that information publicly in an attempt to bolster Trump’s unsubstantiated allegation that President Barack Obama had wiretapped him.
Cohen-Watnick also previously worked with Trump’s first national security adviser, Michael Flynn, who resigned after he misled administration officials, including Vice President Mike Pence, about his contacts with the Russian ambassador to the U.S.
Cohen-Watnick left the White House in August.
His new role at the Justice Department was first reported by the New York Times.
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