WASHINGTON, D.C. | December 30, 2019 — On December 26th and 27th, President Trump sent tweets naming the alleged whistleblower who filed the complaint that sparked investigations into his communications with the President of Ukraine. Although the President had previously called for others to reveal the whistleblower’s identity, these two tweets represented the first times that he posted anything on his Twitter timeline that named the alleged whistleblower. The National Whistleblower Center (NWC) unequivocally condemns these latest attempts by the President and his allies to expose the identity of the intelligence community whistleblower.
NWC Executive Director, John Kostyack stated: “These threats to the personal safety and livelihoods of whistleblowers emanating from the President and his allies are unprecedented and pose a serious threat to our democracy. Our democracy depends on a broad commitment to the rule of law, especially from the individual who sits at the top of our law enforcement apparatus. The whistleblower statute passed by Congress in 2014 states that ‘the President shall provide for the enforcement of this section,’ thus the President has failed to carry out his mandatory duty to enforce the law against reprisals and keep the whistleblower’s identity confidential.”
NWC Board Chairman, Stephen M. Kohn stated: “President Trump needs to take a hard look at what he has posted on Twitter and the statements he has made in public regarding the whistleblower. He should review the comments his attacks have spawned, the mounting evidence that the whistleblower has suffered from actual threats triggered by the president’s comments, and the formal ‘cease and desist’ letter written by the whistleblower’s attorney. Congress explicitly amended obstruction of justice laws to protect whistleblowers in 2002. The Trump-Ukraine whistleblower falls within this statute. She or he reported information to a federal law enforcement agency that was believed to be true and related to the ‘possible commission’ of ‘any’ federal offense. Revealing the identity of the whistleblower would unquestionably violate this law.”
For more information on the legal requirements, see John Kostyack’s blog post and Stephen Kohn’s op-ed in the Hill newspaper. Additionally, please contact Nick Younger at firstname.lastname@example.org.