Wouldn't it be great if Trump were busy keeping his promises to America instead of making secret ones to foreign leaders?
The Washington Post reports tonight the whistleblower complaint that triggered a showdown between the intelligence community and Congress has to do with President Donald Trump's communications with a foreign leader, and a "promise" Trump is said to have made to that leader.
The Washington Post cites two former U.S. officials familiar with the matter as its source, and they told the paper Trump's interaction with the foreign leader included a "promise" so troubling, "it prompted an official in the U.S. intelligence community to file a formal whistleblower complaint with the inspector general for the intelligence community."
As this story breaks, POTUS is on Air Force One flying back from California, where he held fundraisers for his 2020 re-election campaign.
It was not immediately clear which foreign leader Trump was speaking with or what he pledged to deliver, but his direct involvement in the matter has not been previously disclosed. It raises new questions about the president's handling of sensitive information and may further strain his relationship with U.S. spy agencies. One former official said the communication was a phone call.
The White House did not respond to requests for comment. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence and a lawyer representing the whistleblower declined to comment.
Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson determined that the complaint was credible and troubling enough to be considered a matter of "urgent concern," a legal threshold that requires notification of congressional oversight committees.
Gee, wonder who that foreign leader was?
The reporting goes into some detail about Trump's comms in the weeks prior to the complaint being filed.
Yup. Putin's on top of the suspect list.
Read the full story at WAPO: Trump's communications with foreign leader are part of whistleblower complaint that spurred standoff between spy chief and Congress, former officials say [By Greg Miller, Ellen Nakashima, Shane Harris]
Observations from reporters and lawmakers and others on Twitter, below.
Might POTUS have promised Putin in a call in August 12 that he'd unmask the Kremlin spy who then had to be exfiltrated to save his life? Just wondering . . . @RepAdamSchiff
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) September 19, 2019
There are serious consequences for leaking this kind of information, which means someone in the intelligence community is worried enough by whatever allegedly happened to risk personal consequences.
— Joyce Alene (@JoyceWhiteVance) September 19, 2019
Trump's comms w/ a foreign leader are part of the whistleblower complaint that's caused a standoff btw the spy chief and Congress — story via @nakashimae @gregpmiller & @shaneharris. The IC IG huddles with House Intel tomorrow AM. https://t.co/l9GRkjv9Qa
— Karoun Demirjian (@karoun) September 19, 2019
We Democrats are notoriously long winded and wonky and bad at coming up with slogans that fit on a bumper sticker but I think "they are corrupt" is workable.
— Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) September 19, 2019
The acting DNI has refused to share details about Trump's alleged transgression with lawmakers, which has prompted speculation that the spy chief is improperly protecting the president. https://t.co/h71Wnbw3MM
— Vera Bergengruen (@VeraMBergen) September 19, 2019
WOW: The whistleblower complaint is about Trump making an unspecified "promise" in a phone call with a foreign leader that so troubled an intel official that he or she blew the whistle.
How many people get to hear the content of the president's calls?https://t.co/TURQipov33
— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) September 19, 2019
Perhaps telling that the DNI consulted with DOJ before making that determination. Barr's role in trying to keep this all secret is going to merit a lot of scrutiny. https://t.co/ywfp17MrGT
— Matthew Miller (@matthewamiller) September 19, 2019
So the complaint was filed while the president of the United States was at the luxury golf resort he still profits from in office.
In the prior five weeks, he had a call with Putin and received two "beautiful" letters from Kim Jong Un pic.twitter.com/C8hht7Qm7r
— Robert Maguire (@RobertMaguire_) September 19, 2019
We made the troubling promise. pic.twitter.com/DiU1ggDmSp
— Schooley (@Rschooley) September 19, 2019
Any Trump scandal plays out same way in my head…
I'm utterly stunned.
And then quickly wonder how it didn't happen sooner.
— Kate Brannen (@K8brannen) September 19, 2019
— Paul Farhi (@farhip) September 19, 2019
check out the russian readout of call below about fully restoring bilateral relations https://t.co/kwWnUbdq05
— Laura Rozen (@lrozen) September 19, 2019