Whistleblower Complaint That Centers On Trump Involves Ukraine

TOPSHOT - US President Donald Trump leaves after a Hispanic Heritage Month event in the East Room of the White House October 6, 2017 in Washington, DC. President Trump invited over 200 Hispanic business, community, a... TOPSHOT - US President Donald Trump leaves after a Hispanic Heritage Month event in the East Room of the White House October 6, 2017 in Washington, DC. President Trump invited over 200 Hispanic business, community, and faith leaders, and guests from across the country to join in the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. / AFP PHOTO / Brendan Smialowski (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images) MORE LESS

The potentially incendiary whistleblower complaint that reportedly involves President Trump, also at least partially centers on Ukraine, the Washington Post and the New York Times reported Thursday evening.

While the contents of the complaint are still largely shrouded in mystery, multiple reports indicate that the complaint focuses on President Trump and an apparent “promise” he made during a phone call with a foreign leader. A member of the intelligence community who was aware of the call was so disturbed by the conversation that he filed a whistleblower complaint, the Post was first to report earlier this week.

During a closed-door briefing with the House Intelligence Committee on Thursday, the intelligence community inspector general revealed that the whistleblower complaint centers on a series of actions, not just a single phone call. Inspector general Michael Atkinson did not answer questions about who was referenced in the complaint.

It’s unclear whether all of the actions allegedly mentioned in the complaint involve President Trump. CNN’s Jim Sciutto reported that Atkinson confirmed the complaint focused on multiple instances involving the President. Yet, the New York Times reported that Atkinson declined to confirm whether the complaint involved Trump. Atkinson also revealed in the Thursday session that he was unhappy with the way the Justice Department and the director of national intelligence handled the complaint.

After the briefing on Thursday, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff threatened to take the matter to court in order to access the contents of the complaint, which Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire has refused to reveal to Congress.

According to the Times and the Post’s new reports, it’s unclear how Ukraine fits into the allegations in the whistleblower complaint. However, a conversation between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that took place two and a half weeks before the complaint was filed is already under investigation by House Democrats.

Democrats have requested a full transcript of the phone call and a list of people who were part of the discussion. They hope to examine whether Trump and his attorney Rudy Giuliani are working to manipulate the Ukrainian government to help Trump’s reelection.

During an unhinged interview on CNN Thursday evening, Giuliani admitted willingly that he did ask the Ukrainian government to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden, who many believe will be the frontrunner in 2020.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Latest News
Comments
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Reporters:
Newswriters:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: