White House: No personnel announcement on Gorka


WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Trump administration has no announcement regarding the job of Sebastian Gorka, a counterterrorism adviser under fire from some Jewish groups and lawmakers for his ties to far-right Hungarian groups.

“There’s no personnel announcement at the time,” Sean Spicer, the White House spokesman, told reporters on Monday at the daily briefing. “I have no belief he is currently leaving the White House.”

News media reported over the weekend that Gorka was planning to move out of his National Security Council portfolio to another role in the administration. Some media said his failure to obtain a security clearance was the reason for the move.

Gorka wore a medal associated with Vitezi Rend at one of President Donald Trump’s inauguration balls. The movement was founded by Miklos Horthy, Hungary’s leader before and during World War II. Horthy was an avowed anti-Semite and a sometime Nazi collaborator.


Gorka has said he wears the medal at times to honor his late father, a noted figure in the resistance against Hungarian communist regimes. He has said that his father received the award in 1979 when the Vitez was identified more with anti-communist resistance than it was with Horthy. There is no record of Gorka, formerly an editor at Breitbart News, making anti-Semitic remarks.

Democratic Jewish lawmakers and some Jewish groups have called on the White House to look into Gorka’s ties with the Hungarian far right, and some have called for his removal.

Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., who had called for Gorka’s firing, said in a statement Monday that if Gorka was indeed on his way out, it was the “correct response.”

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