Office of Director of National Intelligence not planning to release whistleblower complaint

While lawmakers at a key hearing on Thursday morning are expected to talk about a whistleblower complaint concerning President Trump’s call with Ukraine’s leader, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) is not planning to release a public version, according to a spokesperson.

Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah) late Wednesday said the complaint would be declassified and encouraged his followers to read it, but it’s unclear whether they’ll be able to do so.

ODNI has supplied members of Congress with a redacted version of the complaint that they can bring to Thursday’s hearing with acting intelligence chief Joseph Maguire, an ODNI spokesperson said early Thursday. This means that lawmakers will likely be able to talk freely about its contents.

“Consistent with the accommodations process, last night ODNI formally transmitted a properly classified version of the complaint to the congressional intelligence committees,” an ODNI spokesperson told The Hill in a statement. 

“We also provided Congress a redacted version of the complaint that Members can bring to an open hearing. ODNI is not planning to release the redacted version of the complaint at this time,” the spokesperson said.

Maguire is scheduled to testify before the House Intelligence Committee in open setting on Thursday at 9 a.m.

Late Wednesday, The Hill reported that the whistleblower complaint had been declassified and Stewart’s urging to read it.

It’s possible the administration could reverse course and decide to release a public version of the complaint. It’s unclear whether the committee could release a version of the complaint. The Hill has reached out to White House and the committee for more information.

The whistleblower complaint centers on a July 25 call in which Trump encouraged Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate unsubstantiated allegations against 2020 Democratic front-runner Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden that have been amplified by Trump and his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani. The White House released a memo offering a partial transcript of the call on Wednesday.

The Trump administration first resisted providing a copy of the complaint to Congress but reversed course, delivering a classified version to Capitol Hill on Wednesday evening that House and Senate lawmakers were permitted to review in classified areas.

Democrats have described its contents as troubling without offering up specific details of its contents.

“All I’ll tell you is this. Two things. No. 1, having read the documents in there, I’m even more worried about what happened than when I read the memorandum of the conversation. There are so many facts that have to be examined. It’s very troubling,” said Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.).

Trump has insisted his call with Zelensky was proper, noting the partial transcript showed there was no explicit quid pro quo. He has accused House Democrats, who launched formal impeachment, of a “witch hunt.” Zelensky also told reporters alongside Trump at the United Nations General Assembly in New York Wednesday that he didn’t feel pressure from Trump to investigate Biden.

“No push, no pressure, no nothing. It’s all a hoax,” Trump told reporters at a press conference later Wednesday.

Olivia Beavers contributed. 

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