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Response to hlthe2b (Original post)

Thu Sep 19, 2019, 08:22 AM

109. Josh Marshall (TPM) brings up several good points:

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/the-whistleblower-complaint-is-about-trump

There’s a lot of discussion and context in the Post article. But that’s the central reported detail. It’s not clear who the foreign leader was or what was promised or really anything else. The additional key detail is this: the complaint from the unidentified whistleblower was submitted to Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson. He determined that the complaint was credible and troubling enough to be a matter of “urgent concern”, a legal standard that requires reporting the matter to Congress.

Obviously, anyone in the government can file a whistleblower complaint. They can be frivolous or nonsensical. But the Inspector General determined it was serious and of a pressing nature. Atkinson was nominated to the position by President Trump in 2018 but he appears to be a career government lawyer. He worked at DOJ for 15 years prior to his nomination.

The decision to withhold the information from Congress was made by acting DNI Joseph Maguire, who’s in that position after the dismissal of Dan Coats. But the Post suggests that it’s not actually Maguire’s choice. The Department of Justice told him to withhold the information from Congress.




One final point. The Post article is sourced to “two former U.S. officials familiar with the matter.” That’s odd. This only happened about a month ago. Former officials shouldn’t really know anything about this unless somehow they were in the loop and retired like last week or something. That’s not totally implausible as people seem to be being pushed out of the ODNI in the wake of Coats’ departure. But it sounds (and this is just speculation based on news experience) that this information is being pushed out into the public realm using ex-officials as intermediaries. In other words, people on the inside think something is wrong and they’re using go-betweens with high level clearances to get the information public. Again, this last point is speculation. But I think it’s a logical surmise.

It sounds like something pretty serious is up here.

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hlthe2b Sep 18 OP
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LineReply Josh Marshall (TPM) brings up several good points:
hlthe2b Sep 19 #109
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hlthe2b Sep 19 #146
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