BREAKING: Donald Trump’s ‘promise’ to unnamed foreign leader is at the heart of mystery whistleblower complaint that spy chief refuses to hand over to Adam Schiff, new report claims
- Mystery complaint is reportedly about Trump’s conversation with foreign leader
- Two sources say the complaint is about phone call with the unnamed leader
- Acting DNI Joseph Maguire has refused to hand over the complaint to Congress
- Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff subpoenaed the document and demands to see it
The mystery whistleblower complaint at the heart of a legal battle the Trump administration and Congressional Democrats is about communications between President Donald Trump and a foreign leader, according to a new report.
Trump’s interaction with the foreign leader included a ‘promise’ that was regarded as so troubling that it prompted an intelligence official to file a formal whistleblower complaint with the inspector general for the intelligence community, two former U.S. officials familiar with the matter told the Washington Post.
One of the officials said the communication was a phone call. It was not immediately clear who the foreign leader was or what Trump discussed with the leader.
Last week, Rep. Adam Schiff, the Democrat chair of the House Intelligence Committee, accused acting Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Joseph Maguire of improperly withholding the whistleblower complaint from Congress.
Trump boards Air Force One at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar on Wednesday. His communications with a foreign leader are reportedly at the heart of a whistleblower report
The whistleblower complaint was first submitted on August 12 to Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) Michael Atkinson, according to Schiff.
On the same day the complaint was submitted, Trump spoke by phone with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, although it is not clear if that phone call was the subject of the ‘urgent’ whistleblower complaint.
Trump and Johnson discussed ‘a wide range of issues including trade and global security’ on the call, according to a statement at the time from White House spokesman Judd Deere.
Federal law directs the DNI to transmit a whistleblower complaint to the Congressional intelligence committees within seven days if it is deemed ‘an urgent concern’ by the ICIG.
According to Schiff, the ICIG deemed the complaint ‘not only credible, but urgent’ on August 26, but Maguire failed to transmit the complaint to Congress within the requisite time frame.
Rep. Adam Schiff (left) has accused acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire (right) of improperly withholding a whistleblower complaint from Congress
Jason Klitenic, Maguire’s general counsel, said the whistleblower statute applies only if a complaint involves a member of the intelligence community and maintained that the specific complaint in question did not.
Schiff demanded the document, implying that it was being concealed by the White House to avoid making administration officials look bad.
But Maguire refused, saying that the complaint involves confidential and potentially privileged communications, according to Schiff.
Maguire is expected to testify before an open session of the the House Intelligence Committee at 9am on Thursday, Schiff said.