Oct 1, 2019 - Politics & Policy

Trump wants to interview whistleblower despite federal protections

President Trump tweeted Tuesday that he wants to interview and "learn everything about" the Ukraine whistleblower, despite protections guaranteed under federal law.

"So if the so-called 'Whistleblower' has all second hand information, and almost everything he has said about my 'perfect' call with the Ukrainian President is wrong (much to the embarrassment of Pelosi & Schiff), why aren’t we entitled to interview & learn everything about the Whistleblower, and also the person who gave all of the false information to him.
"This is simply about a phone conversation that could not have been nicer, warmer, or better. No pressure at all (as confirmed by Ukrainian Pres.). It is just another Democrat Hoax!"

The big picture: The Whistleblower Protection Act ensures that officials in the intelligence community can flag wrongdoing without compromising classified information or their identity. If filed using proper channels, the whistleblower receives legal protection and cannot be fired for filing a claim.

  • Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire told the House Intelligence Committee last week that the Ukraine whistleblower "did the right thing" and "followed the law every step of the way."

Reality check: Trump's statements that the whistleblower complaint is "all second hand information" and "simply about a phone conversation" are also incorrect, repeating his misleading claims from earlier this week.

  • The July phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky only encompasses one of four sections of the whistleblower's complaint.
  • The complaint is transparent in its sourcing, and its section about the call is sourced to "multiple White House officials with direct knowledge of the call."
  • The complaint's 3 major allegations about the call were verified by the White House's release of the memo summarizing it.

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