Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer sent a letter to acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire and Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson, asking how they are protecting the identity of the whistleblower amid public backlash and GOP comments.
Schumer wrote that he was concerned that President Trump or someone in his administration would disclose the whistleblower’s identity.
Read the senator’s letter:
Dear Acting Director Maguire and Inspector General Atkinson:
I am writing to ask what specific steps you are taking to protect the security of the intelligence community whistleblower. As you know, on August 12, 2019, the whistleblower reported urgent, credible concerns about serious misconduct and abuse of power by President Trump. The whistleblower filed a complaint pursuant to 50 U.S.C. § 3033(k)(5)(A), and under the law is entitled to protection against retaliation.
Regrettably, however, President Trump has attacked the whistleblower as “a fraud,” referred to the complaint as “fake,” and even suggested that the whistleblower’s sources are spies who should be executed for “treason.” The President has also incorrectly stated that he has a right to “confront” the whistleblower, and has said that he is “trying to find out” the whistleblower’s identity — notwithstanding the fact that whistleblower anonymity is protected by law.
In light of the President’s ill-advised statements, his lack of respect for the rule of law and his well-documented habit of condoning violence by his supporters, I am concerned that he may disclose the whistleblower’s identity or cause it to be disclosed by others in the Administration.
If that were to happen, it will be your responsibility to take immediate action to protect the whistleblower from both workplace reprisal and threats to his or her personal safety. I understand that some security measures may already have been put in place, but I fear that safety risks may intensify in the event that the whistleblower’s identity is disclosed. I also note reports that one or more additional whistleblowers may come forward, creating added security concerns. I therefore ask that you inform me regarding your plans to ensure that these whistleblowers are adequately protected.