Intel Director’s Refusal to Reveal a Whistleblower Complaint Is “Deeply Troubling,” Schiff Says

“The director has said essentially that he is answering to a higher authority.”

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffJ. Scott Applewhite/AP

Last week, the Intelligence Community Inspector General notified Congress about a whistleblower complaint that was “credible” and of “urgent concern.” Now, Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire won’t turn over the complaint at the behest of a “higher authority,” House Intelligence Committee Chair Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday.

“The director has said essentially that he is answering to a higher authority and refusing to turn over the whistleblower complaint,” Schiff said. “This is deeply troubling.” Maguire has said he will not release the complaint because it contains confidential information.

Schiff, who issued a subpoena “to compel the production of” the complaint on Friday, said in a statement that the acting director’s refusal “raises grave concerns” that the Director of National Intelligence’s office, the Department of Justice, and possibly the White House may be engaged a coverup of executive misdeeds: 

The Committee can only conclude, based on this remarkable confluence of factors, that the serious misconduct at issue involves the President of the United States and/or other senior White House or Administration officials. This raises grave concerns that your office, together with the Department of Justice and possibly the White House, are engaged in an unlawful effort to protect the President and conceal from the Committee information related to his possible “serious or flagrant” misconduct, abuse of power, or violation of law.     

If Maguire doesn’t comply with Schiff’s request, he will be required to appear before the committee on September 19.

Watch Schiff’s “Face the Nation” segment below:

THE BIG QUESTION...

as we head into 2020 is whether politics and media will be a billionaires’ game, or a playing field where the rest of us have a shot. That's what Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein tackles in her annual December column—"Billionaires Are Not the Answer"—about the state of journalism and our plans for the year ahead.

We can't afford to let independent reporting depend on the goodwill of the superrich: Please help Mother Jones build an alternative to oligarchy that is funded by and answerable to its readers. Please join us with a tax-deductible, year-end donation so we can keep going after the big stories without fear, favor, or false equivalency.

THE BIG QUESTION...

as we head into 2020 is whether politics and media will be a billionaires’ game, or a playing field where the rest of us have a shot.

Please read our annual column about the state of journalism and Mother Jones' plans for the year ahead, and help us build an alternative to oligarchy by supporting our people-powered journalism with a year-end gift today.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.