The whistleblower whose complaint initiated an impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump’s call with Ukraine’s president never informed the Intelligence Committee Inspector General of his contacts with the House Intelligence Committee.
The same source told Fox News that the whistleblower admitted to the IG he was a registered Democrat and he had worked previously with a prominent Democratic politician.
Nothing to see here. Move along.
The news comes as Intel Chairman Adam Schiff is accusing Republicans of continuing “the president’s strategy of deflection by making the absurd claim that because a whistleblower contacted the committee seeking guidance, the committee cannot conduct an investigation into the complaint.”
That would, indeed, be an absurd claim. But Republicans aren’t saying that. The Republicans want to know why they weren’t informed of the complaint and why Schiff lied about not knowing about the whistleblower’s complaint.
The sources said ICIG Michael Atkinson told lawmakers in a closed session that the whistleblower did not disclose the contact with the California Democrat’s committee and that Atkinson didn’t investigate that contact as he had no knowledge of it.
Would it matter if he had? ICIG Michael Atkinson’s original letter to the Intelligence Committee said he found the whistleblower’s complaint “credible” and “urgent.” How credible would he have found the complaint if he had known that a registered Democrat who had previously worked with Democratic politicians told Democrats on the Intelligence Committee that the president was digging for dirt on a Democratic presidential candidate using a foreign government?
“Like other whistleblowers have done before and since under Republican and Democratic-controlled Committees, the whistleblower contacted the Committee for guidance on how to report possible wrongdoing within the jurisdiction of the Intelligence Community,” Patrick Boland, a spokesman for Schiff and the House Intelligence Committee, told Fox News.
“This is a regular occurrence, given the Committee’s unique oversight role and responsibilities. Consistent with the Committee’s longstanding procedures, Committee staff appropriately advised the whistleblower to contact an Inspector General and to seek legal counsel,” Boland said.
So if this is just normal procedure and a “regular occurrence,” why did Schiff lie about his contact with the whistleblower?
And why did the IG change the rules and make hearsay evidence instead of first-hand evidence acceptable for whistleblower protections?
On Sept. 30, ICIG Michael Atkinson issued a news release acknowledging that, under the policy existing when he received this complaint, he could not have deemed it credible and reported it to the director of national intelligence. Instead, he admitted, he processed the complaint under a policy allowing second-hand information — a policy that he did not establish until after he received that complaint.
According to his news release, Atkinson simply accepted at face value the whistleblower’s assertion that he had first-hand information of at least some of the events alleged, even though the report itself provides no such information.
I think Trump is wrong in saying Schiff helped write the whistleblower’s complaint. That’s baseless nonsense. Schiff isn’t that smart. But the stars certainly all appeared to align for him and the Democrats in this incident. A complaint that, but for a change in policy, would never have seen the light of day made by a registered Democrat member of the intelligence community, to a Democratic Intelligence Committee, that has set in motion a wrenching, partisan impeachment process led by Democrats.
Nothing to see here. Move along.