White House Says It Will Release Whistleblower Complaint, Raising Question Of Why It Has The Complaint At All

Reports out of the White House say that the whistleblower complaint against Donald Trump will be released this week, but under the law, the White House should not have received the complaint.

Donald Trump yells at a reporter.
Spencer Platt / Getty Images

Reports out of the White House say that the whistleblower complaint against Donald Trump will be released this week, but under the law, the White House should not have received the complaint.

After Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi sent shockwaves through Washington D.C. by announcing a formal impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump, and Trump called Pelosi to “work something out” over a whistleblower complaint believed to detail “multiple actions” by Trump that may pose an “urgent” danger to national security, as The Inquisitr reported, the White House now says that it will release that whistleblower report to Congress.

According to a report via Twitter by CNN correspondent Abby D. Phillip, the complaint is “under review” at the White House, and is “going through declassification” before being made public, as early as Wednesday.

But the report of the whistleblower complaint’s supposedly imminent release raises the question of how the complaint fell into White House hands at all. According to a report by the Lawfare legal site, the Intelligence Community Whistleblower Protection Act of 1998, and its 2010 updated version, detail a specific process for the filing and handling of whistleblower complaints within the various United States intelligence agencies.

That process does not include the White House.

In addition, receipt of the whistleblower complaint by the White House in this case appears particularly inappropriate because Donald Trump himself is reportedly the subject of the complaint — which is believed to detail Trump’s July 25 conversation with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky, and Trump’s attempts to pressure him to open a bogus “investigation” into Democratic 2020 frontrunner Joe Biden, an investigation that could boost Trump’s re-election chances, as The Inquisitr reported.

House speaker Nancy Pelosi answers questions.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced an impeachment investigation of Donald Trump on Tuesday. Mark Wilson / Getty Images

According to the Lawfare explanation of the whistleblower process, complaints by whistleblowers within the U.S. intelligence community must be submitted to the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community. The IGIC then must decide within two weeks if the complaint is “credible,” but in this case, the Inspector General not only ruled the complaint “credible,” but also labeled it “urgent,” as The Inquisitr has reported.

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At that point, the IGIC is required to submit the complaint to the Director of National Intelligence, who in turn must send the complaint to Congress within seven days. But current Acting DNI Joseph Maguire has refused to hand the complaint over to the House Intelligence Committee, and on September 13 the chair of that committee, California Democrat Adam Schiff, issued a subpoena to Maguire to produce the whistleblower complaint.

Maguire, however, has continued to withhold the complaint. Now, sources in the White House say that the complaint will be released from there — without explanation of why or how the complaint was transmitted to the White House, apparently in violation of legal procedure.

But one hour after Phillip posted her report that the White House plans to release the complaint, Fox News correspondent John Roberts via his Twitter account posted a report that seemed to indicate a walkback of the earlier announcement. According to Roberts, the White House will release the complaint only “if it is legally possible” to do so.