Stephen Miller Calls the Whistleblower a “Deep State” Agent

The White House adviser nodded to a popular right-wing conspiracy theory on Fox News this morning.

Ron Sachs/CNP via ZUMA

White House senior adviser Stephen Miller went on Fox News Sunday morning to parrot the official White House line that the whistleblower complaint about President Donald Trump’s phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky is nothing more than an attempt to hurt the president.

Miller called the whistleblower a “saboteur trying to undermine a democratically elected government” and invoked a far-right conspiracy line, saying that “this is a deep state operative, pure and simple.”

“A partisan hit job does not make you a whistleblower just because you go through the Whistleblower Protection Act,” Miller to host Chris Wallace said during a heated TV interview on Fox News Sunday.

Miller’s comments follow Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire’s testimony regarding the whistleblower complaint before the House Intelligence Committee last week.

In his testimony, Maguire defended his handling of the complaint. “I believe that the whistleblower and the inspector general have acted in good faith throughout. I have every reason to believe that they have done everything by the book and follow the law,” he told lawmakers.

Miller’s accusations that the whistleblower is a member of the “deep state” echo popular conspiracy rhetoric on the internet that claims the entrenched careerist bureaucrats of America’s intelligence community are working to take down Trump.

The claim that there’s a cabal of so-called deep state actors across the federal government working to undermine the president has cropped repeatedly across the right-wing universe. Trump allies have casually used it as an excuse for difficulties Trump has had in advancing his agenda, and online conspiracy theorists have accused the deep state of helping to enable a supposed pedophile ring being run by liberal elites. There is no evidence to suggest any such group exists.

In the original complaint, the unnamed whistleblower said that in a July 25 call Trump tried to push Zelensky to launch an investigation into former Vice President and 2020 Presidential Candidate Joe Biden and his son Hunter.


In 2014, before Donald Trump announced his run for president, we knew we had to do something different to address the fundamental challenge facing journalism: how hard-hitting reporting that can hold the powerful accountable can survive as the bottom falls out of the news business.

Being a nonprofit, we started planning The Moment for Mother Jones, a special campaign to raise $25 million for key investments to make Mother Jones the strongest watchdog it can be. Five years later, readers have stepped up and contributed an astonishing $23 million in gifts and future pledges. This is an incredible statement from the Mother Jones community in the face of huge threats—both economic and political—against the free press.

Read more about The Moment and see what we've been able to accomplish thanks to readers' incredible generosity so far, and please join them today. Your gift will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $500,000 total, during this critical moment for journalism.

We Recommend


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.


Support our journalism

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


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.