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Whistleblowers and presidential phone calls, what does it mean?

Sep 26, 2019, 3:05 PM
Photo: Getty Images...
Photo: Getty Images

SALT LAKE CITY — The written complaint filed by a whistleblower that has started impeachment proceedings for the President of the United States wasted no time. In short order, the complaint cut right to what the author believes amounts to an “urgent concern” about improprieties they witnessed and heard about in the White House.

Within the first page of a now unclassified memo sent to the Chairs of both the House and Senate Intelligence Committees, this unnamed whistleblower said they believed that the President had been using the power of his office to influence the 2020 election.

“I have received information from multiple US Government officials that the President of the United States is using the power of his office to solicit interference from a foreign country in the 2020 US election,” the complaint.

What’s in the complaint?

Two documents have been released over the last two days which focus on a conversation that President Donald Trump had with then newly elected Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelensky. The conversation was at the end of July.

Yesterday, the White House released an unclassified transcript of a phone call between the two leaders.  On Thursday morning, the House Intelligence Committee released the complaint issued by a whistleblower who believed that conversation was mishandled and hidden.

McKay Coppins, staff writer at The Atlantic has been following the proceedings in Washington DC and spoke with Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) on Wednesday. He told KSL Newsradio’s Dave and Dujanovic that this investigation carries more weight because of the impeachment proceedings started by House Democrats.

“House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has initiated an impeachment inquiry, so the stakes are ratcheted up higher than they would be otherwise because this isn’t’ about ‘if the president did something improper’ or ‘soliciting help from a foreign government to interfere with the next election.'”

“Now,” Coppins said, “House Dems are trying to determine whether this is impeachable and if they should remove him from office,” Coppins said.

What does this mean

Deseret News Opinion Editor Boyd Matheson joined Dave and Dujanovic on Thursday to discuss what this document means for the President and for National Intelligence Director Joseph Maguire.

Matheson said that one of the most important things to remember about this unclassified complaint is that it is just a complaint.

“This is not a report from the Inspector General or Joseph Maguire and his team. This is simply the complaint as filed by the whistleblower.

“There’s an important caveat that ‘ I was not a firsthand witness to anything I will detail in this complaint,'” Matheson said, “but there are many … they said, a half dozen … US officials that have informed me of various facts that they were going to share.”

Matheson says that we need to trust the process that has been started and not let the politics muddy the process. Then, he said, we have a better chance of getting to the truth.

“I think the whistleblower, and Joseph Macquire said this multiple times in his testimony already, that this whistleblower did the right thing in the right way.”

 

 

Hear the rest of the conversation on Dave and Dujanovic here:

 

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Whistleblowers and presidential phone calls, what does it mean?