Acting DNI Refuses To Turn Over ‘Urgent’ Whistleblower Complaint About Trump Administration To House
The acting Director of National Intelligence ignored a demand from House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-California) to hand over a whistleblower’s complaint deemed “credible and urgent” by a government watchdog.
“The acting DNI can either provide the complaint as required under the law, or he will be required to come before the committee to tell the public why he is not following the clear letter of the law, including whether the White House or the attorney general are directing him to do so,” Schiff said.
After missing the imposed Tuesday deadline, Schiff said he intends to subpoena him again.
“He has yet to provide the complaint in response to the committee’s subpoena, so I expect him to appear on Thursday, under subpoena if necessary,” said Schiff.
Last week, acting DNI Joseph Maguire, blocked Congress from receiving the whistleblower’s complaint, instead directing the matter to the Justice Department.
By law, Maguire is required to share with Congress any whistleblower complaint deemed urgent by the intelligence community’s inspector general.
DNI general counsel Jason Klitenic argued that the whistleblower statute only applies to someone “within the responsibility and authority” of the DNI. In a letter to Schiff, he said that because the whistleblower complaint was aimed at a person outside of the intelligence community, Maguire is under no legal obligation to share it with Congress.
“The complaint here involves confidential and potentially privileged matters relating to the interests of other stake holders within the Executive Branch,” wrote Klitenic, adding that he intends to protect the complainant’s identity.
In an interview with CNN on Monday, Schiff said, “I asked the director, ‘Does this involve something that our committee is investigating?’ And initially, the answer was, ‘No.’ And then his legal counsel had to correct him and say, ‘Actually, we can’t say that.”
Schiff has hinted that he thinks the whistleblower complaint could be part of a high-level cover-up extending all the way to Trump.