House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) has changed his mind when he said on Sunday, Oct. 13, that a testimony from an unidentified whistleblower that is at the center of the House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump might not be necessary.
During an interview on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Schiff acknowledged he was initially interested in pushing the whistleblower to come before Congress, but now he is shifting away from that path.
“Given that we already have the call record, we don’t need the whistleblower who wasn’t on the call to tell us what took place during the call, we have the best evidence of that,” he said. “It may not be necessary to take steps that might reveal the whistleblower’s identity to do that, and we’re going to make sure we protect that whistleblower.”
Schiff was referring to a phone call President Trump had with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on July 25, which the whistleblower wrote a complaint about, alleging the president pressured Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son’s business dealings. House Democrats have launched an impeachment inquiry against President Trump based on that complaint.
President Trump authorized the White House to release the readout of the call to prove his conversation was “perfect,” “nothing wrong.” Last week, even Zelenskiy reiterated there was “no blackmail” in the July call with President Trump.
According to the Daily Caller News Foundation, Schiff has pulled back his preference for the whistleblower, known as a CIA analyst, to testify after it was revealed on Oct. 2 that the whistleblower had contact with a Schiff aide prior to filing the complaint on Aug. 12.
In some interviews before the release of the whistleblower complaint, Schiff implied he had no insight into who the whistleblower was or what he or she was alleging. On Sept. 17, he even said, “We have not spoken directly with the whistleblower.”
In the Sunday interview, Schiff indicated he has changed his mind after “the president threatened the whistleblower and others, called them traitors and spies.”
“Our primary interest right now is making sure that that person is protected. Indeed, now there’s more than one whistleblower, that they are protected,” Schiff said.
The Daily Caller citing a Republican source said that it appeared Schiff was “laying the groundwork” to announce the whistleblower will not testify and “to blame that on Republicans.”
“Schiff may not want the whistleblower to testify anymore because the whistleblower would have to reveal more details about this cooperation with Schiff,” the source said.
In a tweet late on Sunday, President Trump once again slammed Schiff for fabricating content of his phone call transcript and “read it to Congress & the American People.”
…..BY THE WAY, DON’T CALL ME AGAIN, I’LL CALL YOU WHEN YOU’VE DONE WHAT I’VE ASKED.’” A reminder, that wasn’t just stupid, it was FALSE.” @greggutfeld @GregGutfeldShow @FoxNews I never said this. Schiff made it up and read it to Congress & the American People. End Witch Hunt!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 13, 2019
During a speech at the Family Research Council on Saturday, Oct. 12, President Trump said he is mulling over suing Schiff and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) “because they’re lying and what they’re doing is a terrible thing for our country.”