Donald Trump Jr., the son of President Donald Trump, shared a Breitbart News article that included the name of the alleged Ukraine whistleblower in a tweet on Wednesday. The action drew swift criticism, though the younger Trump stood by his decision to share the article claiming to identify the whistleblower.
In the tweet sent Wednesday morning, Trump Jr. sent out a link to a Breitbart article and included the headline "Alleged 'Whistleblower' Eric Ciaramella Worked Closely with anti-Trump Dossier Hoaxer."
Trump Jr. also shared a brief opinion alongside the link and headline.
"Because of course he did!!!" Trump Jr. said.
Reaction to Trump Jr.'s tweet was strong.
"Private citizen or not, you violated federal law," one user tweeted.
"I have not seen his name before. I just hope that the person and their family are safe after your recklessness," another said.
Some came to the defense of the president's son.
"Did he write the story?" one user said in response to a critic of Trump's firstborn son.
Yashar Ali, a contributor at HuffPost and New York Magazine, said in a tweet that he asked the White House if anyone in the Trump administration had any prior knowledge that the president's son was going to tweet the name of the alleged whistleblower. The White House said they did not, per Ali's tweet. In a follow-up tweet, Ali shared that the president's son sent him a text message that described the negative reaction to Trump's earlier tweet as "BS."
The younger Trump, who released his book, Triggered, on Tuesday, shared the statement Ali had tweeted and offered a further comment about the reaction to his tweet from earlier in the day.
"The entire media is #Triggered that I (a private citizen) tweeted out a story naming the alleged whistleblower," Trump Jr. tweeted about five minutes before noon Wednesday. "Are they going to pretend that his name hasn't been in the public domain for weeks now? Numerous people & news outlets including Real Clear Politics already ID'd him."As The Inquisitr previously reported, the president has repeatedly called for the identity of the whistleblower, whose complaint in August led to the impeachment inquiry currently faced by Trump, to be revealed. On Sunday, Trump posted a tweet in which he urged members of the media to reveal the identity of the whistleblower, claiming that the news media knows who the individual is.
The identity of the whistleblower has remained secret since news of their existence first arose in September. By revealing the name of the alleged whistleblower, which has reportedly circulated online for weeks, Trump Jr. broke "strict conventions" meant to protect individuals who sound the alarm about government wrongdoing, according to Agence France-Presse via Yahoo News. Per Agence France-Presse, the news agency could not verify the identity of the whistleblower that Donald Trump Jr. tweeted Wednesday. It did note that the name tweeted by the president's son was that of a former CIA analyst.