Donald Trump lashed out on Thursday in a shocking series of statements aimed at the whistleblower who raised the alarm about his phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. The president said that the whistleblower was akin to a spy before lamenting that spies and treasonous behavior were dealt with harshly in the past.
According to The New York Times, Trump shocked the assembled audience at an event intended to honor the United States Mission to the United Nations while making comments attacking the Ukraine whistleblower.
“I want to know who’s the person who gave the whistle-blower the information because that’s close to a spy,” Mr. Trump said. “You know what we used to do in the old days when we were smart with spies and treason, right? We used to handle it a little differently than we do now.”
Trump began the meeting in front of a team of 50 Mission staff, condemning Joe Biden and his son Hunter before launching into the media, which he called “crooked” and “scum” for its reporting on the complaint about his phone call with Zelensky. He then said that he wanted to know the identity of the whistleblower before alluding to the punishment for spies and treason.
Trump is facing scrutiny, and the House has opened impeachment proceedings against him in the wake of a whistleblower report that alleges the president used his office to pressure Ukraine to investigate his leading Democratic opponent in the upcoming 2020 election during a July 25 phone call.
A copy of the whistleblower’s complaint was made public on Thursday and showed that the individual was alerted to the nature of the call by multiple officials within the government.
“Over the past four months, more than half a dozen U.S. officials have informed me of various facts related to this effort,” the complaint reads.
Trump also tweeted about the complaint, arguing that since the information was received secondhand, the investigation amounts to a “witch hunt” against him.
“A whistleblower with second hand information? Another Fake News Story! See what was said on the very nice, no pressure, call. Another Witch Hunt!” he wrote.
As The Inquisitr reported, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi began formal impeachment proceedings against the president this week. In an appearance where she addressed the issue with reporters, she said that she believed the White House had covered up the whistleblower complaint, withholding it from Congress for a month before the complaint came to light.
Trump has denied any wrongdoing, as has Vice President Mike Pence, who claimed that Democrats were fearful that they couldn’t win in the 2020 election, so they are impeaching the president.