The whistleblower who set off the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump has sought federal witness protection because they fear for their safety.
Update 7:05 a.m. EDT Sept. 30: Hours after the "60 Minutes" report claiming the attorney for the whistleblower who set off the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump was seeking witness protection, the same attorney said that the news program "misrepresented" the content of the letter, Fox News reported.
Attorney Mark Zaid said he has also not reached an agreement with lawmakers on any contact with his client.
NEWS ALERT: 60 Minutes completely misinterpreted contents of our letter, which is now published online at https://t.co/HjmBrEQLEi. Nor have we, as we stated earlier today, reached any agreement with Congress on contact with the whistleblower. Discussions remain ongoing. https://t.co/3XSwmtuRrn— Mark S. Zaid (@MarkSZaidEsq) September 30, 2019
Read the letter below:
Zaid letter to DNI acting director by National Content Desk on Scribd
A "60 Minutes" spokesperson said in a statement to Politico, "60 Minutes stands by its sources and reporting on the whistle-blower."
Original report: A letter from the whistleblower's attorney was sent Saturday to Joseph Maguire, the acting director of national intelligence, 60 Minutes reported.
“60 Minutes” has obtained a letter that indicates the government whistleblower who set off the impeachment inquiry of President Trump is under federal protection because they fear for their safety https://t.co/UwLNvWdClT— 60 Minutes (@60Minutes) September 29, 2019
"The purpose of this letter is to formally notify you of serious concerns we have regarding our client's personal safety," attorney Andrew Bakaj wrote. "The events of the past week have heightened our concerns that our client's identity will be disclosed publicly and that, as a result, our client will be put in harm's way."
Bakaj noted Trump’s Wednesday comments:
“I want to know who’s the person that gave the Whistleblower, who’s the person that gave the Whistleblower the information, because that’s close to a spy,” Trump said. “You know what we used to do in the old days when we were smart? Right? With spies and treason, right? We used to handle them a little differently than we do now.”
A $50,000 “bounty” for information about the whistleblower has also been issued, Bakaj said in the letter.
Trump continued to aim his Tweets at the whistleblower Sunday.
"Like every American, I deserve to meet my accuser, especially when this accuser, the so-called 'Whistleblower,' represented a perfect conversation with a foreign leader in a totally inaccurate and fraudulent way," Trump said in a series of Tweets. "In addition, I want to meet not only my accuser, who presented SECOND & THIRD HAND INFORMATION, but also the person who illegally gave this information, which was largely incorrect, to the 'Whistleblower.' Was this person SPYING on the U.S. President? Big Consequences!"
....In addition, I want to meet not only my accuser, who presented SECOND & THIRD HAND INFORMATION, but also the person who illegally gave this information, which was largely incorrect, to the “Whistleblower.” Was this person SPYING on the U.S. President? Big Consequences!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 29, 2019
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