Whistle-Blower Is Said to Allege Concerns About White House Handling of Ukraine Call – The New York Times

Lawyers for the whistle-blower expressed concern in an interview on Wednesday about officials disclosing their client’s identity.

“Intelligence officers, by nature, are not people who want to be publicly known,” said Andrew P. Bakaj, the lead lawyer for the whistle-blower. “If you are an intelligence officer through and through, you are doing this for national security.”

The comments by Mr. Bakaj — who is representing the officer for free along with two other lawyers, Mark Zaid and Charles McCullough III — were the first, however limited, to the press about the case. Coming forward to the inspector general was very risky, said John Napier Tye, the founder of Whistleblower Aid, which is raising money to defray expenses for the complainant.

“To have the president of the United States tweeting about you, casting aspersions, it is scary for anyone — it is very scary for anyone who works in the intelligence community,” Mr. Tye said.

The legal team’s objective, Mr. Zaid said, is to continue to try to get information about the complaint lawfully to the congressional oversight committees. Mr. Zaid and Mr. Bakaj have sought permission from Mr. Maguire to be cleared to see the full complaint and represent their client before the House Intelligence Committee.

Reporting was contributed by Katie Benner, Nicholas Fandos, Maggie Haberman and Mark Mazzetti.


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