Last week, the senior Democratic congressman and House Intelligence Committee chairman insisted that he does not know the identity of the whistleblower whose complaint is at the heart of the Democrats’ impeachment investigation against President Trump.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff had a tense exchange with Congressman Devin Nunes on Tuesday morning after the Republican lawmaker asked senior US National Security Council staffer Alexander Vindman about the identity of the whistleblower who made the complaint against President Trump. The incident was caught on camera.
After Nunes asked Vindman to narrow down which of America’s 17 intelligence agencies the complaint came from, Schiff jumped in before the army officer could respond.
“If I could interject here, we don’t want to use these proceedings – we need to protect the whistleblower,” Schiff said. “I want to make sure that there’s no effort to out the whistleblower through the use of these proceedings,” he added, saying he would “advise the witness” not to reveal the whistleblower’s identity.
Nunes told the witness that he had the right to answer his question, or plead the Fifth Amendment, with Vindman refusing to answer. “Per the advice of my counsel, I have been advised not to answer specific questions about members of the intelligence community,” Vindman said.
“Are you aware that this is the intelligence committee…