Devin Nunes and the Legend of the “Whistleblower-Type Person”

Douglas Graham/CQPHO

One more point about the ‘un-masking’ story, picking up on my piece from last night. You’ll remember that early on, Chairman Nunes told Speaker Ryan and others that his source was a “whistleblower-type person.” This always struck most people as rather ridiculous, and rightly so: People at the White House leaking pro-White House information really don’t qualify as “whistleblowers.” But again, I would suggest that this bit of weirdness fits perfectly with the scenario I set out last night.

As I noted, it appears that Ezra Cohen-Watnick (30 year old Mike Flynn protege) got shut down by the White House Counsel’s Office after they found out what he was up to – and rightly so. Then it appears he decided he needed to go outside official channels to get his information to what he considered to be the right people, quite likely going against the express directives of his superiors. (Remember, his direct boss, H.R. McMaster was trying to fire Cohen-Watnick at the time.) That does make him a “whistleblower-type person” in a way, albeit in a fairly imbecilic and non-sensical way. But you can see how Cohen-Watnick and his confederate, Michael Ellis, would have seen it that way, or wanted to.

Given how Nunes is acting and thinking, one can also see how Nunes might have bought into that line of reasoning as well, though he even he seemed to realize it was iffy – ergo a “whistleblower-type person”, rather than just a “whistleblower”.