House Speaker Nancy Pelosi accused National Intelligence Director Joesph Maguire of breaking the law regarding President Trump’s phone call with the president of Ukraine, asserting a whistleblower complaint provides evidence of a cover-up orchestrated by the White House.
The California Democrat said Mr. Maguire had a legal obligation to turn over the whistleblower complaint and establish the terms under which that could individual could testify to Congress.
“I think what the DNI did was broke the law. The law is very clear,” she said.
“The very idea that the subject of the complaint is who he went to to find out if it was OK to go forward, I think, is wrong,” she added.
Mr. Maguire is facing the same pressure as he sits in front of the House Intelligence Committee.
In light of accusations that his actions were improper, he argued that he couldn’t legally bring the information to Congress because the White House cited executive privilege over the phone call between Mr. Trump and Ukrainian President Zelensky, but that he was not instructed to withhold the information.
However, Mrs. Pelosi said it was clear the White House was leading a cover-up of the phone call, pointing to a detail in the complaint that described officials using a code-level computer security system to “hide” the call.
“Whatever other explanation there might be, an explanation is also that is a cover-up,” she said. “And the president has been engaged in a cover-up all along. Why else would he be obstructing in the courts?”
At the center of this explosive episode are allegations put forward by the whistleblower that Mr. Trump pressured the Ukrainian president into investigating former Vice President Joseph R. Biden and his son Hunter.
Both the whistleblower complaint and the inspector general’s report on the allegations were publicly released by the House Intelligence Committee on Thursday.
The White House also released a transcript of Mr. Trump’s phone call with Mr. Zelensky on Wednesday, showing the two did discuss Mr. Biden but did not have any examples of using military aid as leverage.
The president has denied his actions were wrong and accused the Democrats of trying to “destroy” the Republican Party.
“That the president thinks that this proves his innocence only goes to show how further he doesn’t understand right from wrong,” Mrs. Pelosi said.
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