The controversy surrounding President Donald Trump’s phone call in July with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky took another twist on Sunday morning when a second reported whistleblower emerged.
According to The Associated Press, the new whistleblower has reportedly spoken to the intelligence community’s internal watchdog and “has information that backs the original whistleblower’s complaint.”
However, lawyer Mark Zaid, who represents both whistleblowers, told the AP that the second individual hasn’t filed an official complaint with the inspector general.
The second whistleblower has “firsthand knowledge that supported” the original whistleblower, the AP reported.
Of note, like the first, the second whistleblower is reportedly also an intelligence official, according to the AP.
Zaid also spoke to ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos.
BREAKING: Attorney representing whistleblower who sounded the alarm on Pres. Trump’s dealings with Ukraine tells @ABC News he is now representing a second whistleblower who has first-hand knowledge of events. https://t.co/9FE7oei7pJ
— GeorgeStephanopoulos (@GStephanopoulos) October 6, 2019
In response to Stephanopoulos’ tweet, Andrew P. Bakaj, managing partner of the firm working with the whistleblowers, confirmed the various reports.
IC WHISTLEBLOWER UPDATE: I can confirm that my firm and my team represent multiple whistleblowers in connection to the underlying August 12, 2019, disclosure to the Intelligence Community Inspector General. No further comment at this time. https://t.co/05b5aAVm2G
— Andrew P. Bakaj (@AndrewBakaj) October 6, 2019
“I can confirm that my firm and my team represent multiple whistleblowers in connection to the underlying August 12, 2019, disclosure to the Intelligence Community Inspector General. No further comment at this time,” Bakaj wrote.
Interestingly, Bakaj wrote that there were “multiple” whistleblowers. While two certainly counts as “multiple,” Bakaj’s wording leaves the door ajar for more potential whistleblowers.
The New York Times had also reported on the potential existence of a second whistleblower on Friday. However, ABC News reported that Zaid is unsure if the second whistleblower he represents is the same one mentioned by the Times.
Trump responded to word about the new reported whistleblower on Twitter.
The first so-called second hand information “Whistleblower” got my phone conversation almost completely wrong, so now word is they are going to the bench and another “Whistleblower” is coming in from the Deep State, also with second hand info. Meet with Shifty. Keep them coming!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 6, 2019
“The first so-called second hand information ‘Whistleblower’ got my phone conversation almost completely wrong, so now word is they are going to the bench and another ‘Whistleblower’ is coming in from the Deep State, also with second hand info. Meet with Shifty,” Trump wrote, alluding to Rep. Adam Schiff, the California Democrat who chairs the House Intelligence Committee.
“Keep them coming!” Trump added.
The new whistleblower information comes amid a contentious period in Washington after the first complaint was filed August 12. Controversy over the credibility of the first whistleblower wasn’t enough to dissuade House Speaker Nancy Pelosi from declaring an “inquiry” into impeachment proceedings against the president.
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