Spicer says NSC has not been altered – documents suggest otherwise

Here is the relevant text from, first, Obama’s NSC organizational memo and then from Trump’s. A compare write indicates the significant number of edits and changes between the two administrations. The two major changes are 1) the delegation of the Director of National Intelligence and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to attendance only when “issues pertain to their responsibilities” (a decision presumably to be made by the National Security Advisor) when under Obama they were “regular members” of the PC. (Note that the statutory National Security Council remains unchanged because it is a product of Congressionally approved legislation.); and 2) the elevation of Steve Bannon, the fascist sympathizer who is a strategist for the President, to a seat on the Principals Committee.

OBAMA:

B. The NSC Principals Committee

The NSC Principals Committee {NSC/PC) will continue to be the
senior interagency forum for consideration of policy issues
affecting national security, as it has been since 1989. The
National Security Advisor shall serve as Chair, and its regular
members will be the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the
Treasury, the Secretary of Defense, the Attorney General,
the Secretary of Energy, the Secretary of Homeland Security,
the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, the
Representative of the United States of America to the
United Nations, the Chief of Staff to the President, the Director
of National Intelligence, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of
Staff .
The Assistant to the President and Deputy National
Security Advisor, the Deputy Secretary of State, the Counsel
to the President, and the Assistant to the Vice President for
National Security Affairs shall be invited to attend every
meeting of the NSC/PC. When international economic issues are
on the agenda, the NSC/PC’s regular attendees will include the
Secretary of Commerce, the United States Trade Representative,
the Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers, and the Assistant
to the President for Economic Policy, who, at the discretion of
the National Security Advisor, may serve as chair. When homeland
security or counter-terrorism related issues are on the agenda,
the NSC/PC’s regular attendees will include the Assistant to the
President for Homeland Security and Counter-Terrorism, who, at
the discretion of the National Security Advisor, may serve as
chair . When science and technology related issues are on the
agenda, the NSC’s regular attendees will include the Director of
the Office of Science and Technology Policy. The heads of other
executive departments’ and agencies, along with additional senior
officials, shall be invited as appropriate.

The NSC/PC shall meet at the call of the National Security
Advisor, in consultation with the members of the NSC/PC .
The National Security Advisor shall determine the agenda in
consultation with the other committee members, and shall
ensure that necessary papers are prepared and that conclusions
and decisions are communicated in a timely manner.

TRUMP:

B. The Principals Committee

The Principals Committee (PC) shall continue to serve as the Cabinet-level senior
interagency forum for considering policy issues that affect the national security
interests of the United States. The PC shall be convened and chaired by the
National Security Advisor or the Homeland Security Advisor, as appropriate, in
consultation with the appropriate attendees of the PC. The Chair shall determine
the agenda in consultation with the appropriate committee members, and the
Executive Secretary shall ensure that necessary papers are prepared and that
conclusions and decisions are communicated in a timely manner. Invitations to
participate in or attend a specific PC shall be extended at the discretion of the
National Security Advisor and the Homeland Security Advisor, and may include those
Cabinet-level heads of executive departments and agencies, and other senior
officials, who are needed to address the issue under consideration.

The PC shall have as its regular attendees the Secretary of State, the Secretary
of the Treasury, the Secretary of Defense, the Attorney General, the Secretary of
Homeland Security, the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, the
Assistant to the President and Chief Strategist [Bannon], the National Security Advisor,
and the Homeland Security Advisor. The Director of National Intelligence and the
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff shall attend where issues pertaining to
their responsibilities and expertise are to be discussed.
The Counsel to the
President, the Deputy Counsel to the President for National Security Affairs, and
the Director of the Office of Management and Budget may attend all PC meetings.
The Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security Advisor (Deputy
National Security Advisor), the Deputy Assistant to the President and National
Security Advisor to the Vice President, and the Executive Secretary (who shall
serve as the Executive Secretary of the PC) shall attend all of the meetings of
the PC, and the Representative of the United States to the United Nations and the
Assistant to the President for Intragovernmental and Technology Initiatives may
attend as appropriate.

When international economic issues are on the agenda of the PC, the Committee’s
regular attendees will include the Secretary of Commerce, the United States Trade
Representative, and the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy (who shall
serve as Chair for agenda items that principally pertain to international
economics).

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