Whistleblower Complaint Reveals Trump Interest To Use US Power For His Gain
The Whistleblower complaint against President Donald Trump concerning his phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was released to the public on Thursday with few redactions. The unidentified whistleblower claim that not only did the US president misuse his office for personal gain and endangered national security, but some Whites House officials also tried to cover it up to keep it a secret.
In the whistleblower complaint, it was revealed that during a July 25th phone call with the president of Ukraine, President Trump suggested “a lot of people want to find out” about the Biden family’s activities in Ukraine. Trump then asked Zelensky for a “favor” in looking into Joe Biden and reporting to Trump associates with any information.
The request was highly questionable because Biden is potential competition for Trump in the 2020 presidential election. Some reports suggest Trump withheld the approval of military aid to Ukraine in order to gain leverage in his personal pursuit of politically damning information on Biden.
Zelensky assured Trump he would have someone “look into the situation” and Trump repeatedly suggested Zelensky contact either Attorney General Bill Barr or his personal attorney Rudy Guiliani with any information on Biden or his family.
Trump in Hot Water
The legal argument has been made that requesting such assistance from a foreign government is comparable to accepting monetary campaign donations, thus leaving Trump in violation of U.S. campaign finance law.
Others argue that if Trump withheld military aid for political leverage, he would have been abusing his power as president for personal gain. One Republican rival even accused the president of treason and noted the death penalty as the punishment for such a crime.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi accused Trump of “seriously” violating the Constitution, but the Justice Department quickly cleared the president of a crime, stating there is not enough evidence to prove any “criminal campaign finance violation.”
Democrats launch an impeachment inquiry
In spite of any decisions from the Justice Department, the phone call catalyzed a complaint from a concerned whistle-blower and a formal impeachment inquiry from the House of Representatives. Currently, House Democrats have obtained 215 of the 218 votes needed to proceed with impeachment proceedings.
Trump has been defending his communications with Zelensky since news of the whistle-blower complaint broke. Trump has once again alleged a “witch hunt” by Democrats and rejected any wrongdoing. In a joint press conference with Zelensky, both men denied that Trump had put any pressure on the Ukrainian president.
On Twitter, Trump accused Democrats of “purposely” trying to “ruin and demean” an “important day at the United Nations” with “more breaking news Witch Hunt garbage.” Sen. Lindsey Graham of S.C. called the impeachment inquiry a “nothing (non-quid pro quo) burger” and accused Democrats of being “out of their minds.”
A nine-page report on the whistle-blower’s complaint was released Thursday morning and suggests concern that there was an organized effort by the White House to ‘lockdown’ records of the phone call between Trump and Zelensky.
The whistle-blower claimed in the complaint that he or she was told by White House officials that White House attorneys had instructed them to remove the electronic transcript of the call from its place in storage. The report alleges that Trump officials were aware of the optics of the call and were trying to cover up the evidence trail within days of the phone call taking place.
In front of a crowd on Thursday, President Trump reportedly called the whistle-blower a spy and suggested their actions would have been handled “a little differently” in the past — seeming to insinuate they would have been punished by execution and they would have deserved it.
House Democrats accused the president of “reprehensible witness intimidation” and “an attempt to obstruct Congress’ impeachment inquiry” by making public statements which could be perceived as threatening by someone who will soon be interviewed in Trump’s impeachment inquiry.
Sources close to Trump have reportedly admitted concern that he will become “unmanageable” during impeachment proceedings, as they predict he will become even more “impulsive” than he already has been.
Read the full unclassified whistleblower complaint below