Whistleblower: White House tried to 'lock down' call details

Friday, 27 Sep, 2019

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, right, listens as US President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference at the InterContinental Barclay New York hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, September 25, 2019, in New York.

The president met with Zelensky in NY on Wednesday, where he is attending the opening of the United Nations General Assembly.

The U.S. House intelligence committee on Thursday released a redacted version of a whistleblower complaint at the centre of an impeachment probe against U.S. President Donald Trump.

Maguire is testifying to the Committee on the whistleblower report released by a congressional panel on Thursday which said Trump used his office to solicit Ukraine's interference in the 2020 election to advance his personal political interests, risking USA national security.

Nunes added, the meetings about the complaint should be behind closed doors, but then Democrats would not get their true goal of a media frenzy.

The complaint was made available to members of House and Senate intelligence committees only on September 25, the evening before Maguire was set to testify. "Because of that we were unable to immediately share the details of the complaint with this committee".

The White House released a memo of the call, but not a verbatim transcript, on Wednesday.

Maguire also had praise for the inspector general, who was the first to receive the complaint.

One congressman who read the contents of the complaint called it "deeply disturbing".

The identity of the whistleblower has not been publicly disclosed.

"The way this thing was blowing out, I didn't think it was appropriate for me to be making a press statement so that we counter each other every step of the way", Maguire said, stating that he'd emphasized to the intelligence community his commitment to whistleblower protection.

While the formal impeachment inquiry announced on Tuesday by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is led by Democrats, some of Trump's fellow Republicans joined them in calling on the administration to send the report to Congress.

"Having read the documents in there, I'm even more anxious about what happened than I was when I read the memorandum of the conversation", said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Several Republican lawmakers also defended the president on Wednesday, saying the summary does not show anything incriminating.

At least one Republican lawmaker disagrees. Rep.

He also said he thought the complaint was "very well done". The intelligence committees received partial, still-classified copies of the document on Wednesday.

The White House tried to "lock down" records of Trump's call, the document says.

The White House released a rough transcript of that call Wednesday morning.

According to the transcript, Trump pushed Zelensky to investigate into how Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden in 2016 stopped a prosecution of a Ukrainian gas company which might be related to his son, Hunter Biden.

"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. The president was also quick to point out that there was no evidence in the transcript of any "quid pro quo" from the US if Ukraine agreed to what the president had asked.

A lawmaker who has seen the complaint told CNN's Jim Acosta "there are more dimensions" to the complaint than first reported. Atkinson disagreed but said his hands were tied.

After establishing the importance of obtaining a security clearance when handling sensitive intelligence information, Quigley asked Maguire if he knew whether Giuliani had a security clearance. Schiff said Wednesday morning that Maguire still had not provided any instructions on how that could happen.

In the letter, which was written to Sen.