In the latest in the ever evolving, ever changing case of the “Ukrainian Phone Call,” the full unredacted whistleblower complaint has been made public, and Acting DNI, Joseph Maguire, has spent half the day testifying before Congress.
In the 9-page declassified version of the document, which is dated Aug. 12, the unnamed whistleblower cites conversations and details provided by “more than half a dozen U.S. officials,” alleging that Trump is “using the power of his office to solicit interference from a foreign country in the 2020 U.S. election.”
You may read the released version of the full complaint here.
This happened just before Joseph Maguire arrived on Capitol Hill, where during tense testimony, the former Navy SEAL defended his handling of the explosive whistleblower complaint alleging President Trump pressured the Ukrainian president to investigate the Biden family — while calling the issue “unprecedented.”
Acting DNI Testifies on Whistleblower Complaint
Maguire was grilled by Democratic lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee but insisted he is “not partisan” and “not political,” reminding the panel that he served under eight presidents and has taken the oath of office 11 times.
“I have served and led through turbulent times,” he said. “… My integrity has never been questioned until now.”
However, he maintained, “I believe that I handled this matter in full compliance with the law at all times.”
The rare open hearing of the intelligence committee gripped the nation’s attention most of the day on Thursday.
While being pushed by the Democrats to go on record with statements that would suit their impeachment agenda, Maguire pushed back by reminding the committee that the complaint was not based on direct knowledge, particular as regards the whistleblower’s use of the term “cover-up.”
“This is second-hand information from a whistleblower. I have no knowledge if that is a true and accurate statement,” Maguire said regarding the “cover-up” claim. The complaint said White House officials tried to “lock down” records of the call. In the same document, the whistleblower also acknowledged not being a “direct witness” to most of the events described, instead citing other U.S. officials who are not named.
Of course, as Democrats on the committee badgered Maguire, Republicans rose to his defense, while at the same time accusing Democrats of launching an “information warfare operation” against President Trump. Rep. Chris Stewart, R-Utah, said of Maguire, “I think you’re nuts if you’re going to convince the American people that your cause is just by attacking this man, by impugning his character.”
Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., browbeat Maguire over the timeline of his cooperation with the committee. Maguire hit back by saying he was not able to release the document at first because of executive privilege concerns and other issues. He also said he is not aware of any instance where such a complaint dealt with such “complicated and sensitive issues.”
“I believe that this matter is unprecedented,” he testified. He also said he does not know the identity of the whistleblower, but said that he believes that he or she acted in “good faith.”
The White House, on Wednesday, released an unclassified version of the transcript of that controversial phone call. The memo, which does not reflect a “verbatim transcript” but is based on “notes and recollections” of those memorializing the call, shows Trump congratulating Zelensky on his election victory before Trump eventually gets to the subject of the Bidens, seeking an investigation of some kind.
Maguire says that the whistleblower complaint released Thursday “is in alignment with what was released yesterday by the President.”