With the specter of impeachment hanging over his head, Donald Trump announced today that he plans to release a full unredacted transcript of his fateful phone call with the president of Ukraine. There’s no reason to believe that any such transcript will be honest or accurate, but now we know why he’s suddenly talking about releasing it.
This afternoon, Adam Schiff tweeted this: “We have been informed by the whistleblower’s counsel that their client would like to speak to our committee and has requested guidance from the Acting DNI as to how to do so. We‘re in touch with counsel and look forward to the whistleblower’s testimony as soon as this week.” In other words, the whistleblower has decided that he or she wants to immediately come forward and tell the real story.
There are some caveats here. If any portion of this hearing is public, it’ll be aired in front of the television cameras, and suffice it to say that a whole lot of people will tune in. But the whistleblower will not legally be able to discuss any aspects of his or her own report that involve classified or otherwise secret information. Any discussion of classified intel would have to take place behind closed doors.
It’s also not clear if Acting DNI Joseph Maguire can or will try to delay the whistleblower’s testimony. Interestingly, several outlets have reported today that the Senate Intelligence Committee, controlled by Republican Chair Richard Burr, is also seeking a private bipartisan interview with the whistleblower. Burr is retiring, and generally seems more interested in covering his bases than in protecting Trump. This suggests that the Trump regime can’t stop what’s already underway. Here comes the whistleblower.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report