WASHINGTON – The executive director of national intelligence will not testify before Congress this week or immediately file a whistleblowing complaint to lawmakers, escalating opposition between Capitol Hill and intelligence agency leaders.
The Democratic chairman of the House Intelligence Committee's Representative, Adam B. Schiff, of California, requested in a cryptic letter on Friday that Joseph Maguire, acting director of national intelligence, should file a complaint against the whistle blower filed with the Inspector General. intelligence agencies. ] Mr. Schiff asked in his letter whether the basic conduct involved "the president or the people around him." But Mr. Schiff said he could not discuss the substance of the complaint and was difficult to assess because its character was not publicly known. Other lawmakers said they did not know the details of the complaint.
The complaint involves the conduct of someone" outside the intelligence community "and does not involve intelligence under the supervision of Mr. Maguire, Director-General of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence Director Jason Klitenich wrote on Tuesday a letter to Mr. Schiff by The New York Times. This position signals a disagreement between the Inspector General and the Director of National Intelligence as to who will best investigate the complaint.
The initial complaint was filed on August 12 by a member of the intelligence community according to officers informed of the matter. .
n. Schiff said the law required the appeal and determination of the Inspector General to be shared with Congress within seven days.
"No Director of National Intelligence has ever refused to file a whistleblower complaint," Mr. Schiff said Sunday to CBS
. Schiff told CBS that Mr Maguire had told him that he was not filing the complaint, "as he was instructed not to do so, that it involves a higher authority, someone above," the director of national intelligence, a position in the cabinet.
But Mr. Klitenic concluded that the complaint did not meet the legal definition of "urgent concern" to be submitted to the congressional oversight committee. Only allegations related to the funding, administration or operation of a intelligence agency meet this requirement, the lawyer wrote.
Either the Inspector General of the Intelligence Committee or the Director of National Intelligence may refer the complaint to another department and the relevant oversight committee. , said an intelligence officer. But the intelligence agency's inspector general has already begun investigating the complaint and alerting the intelligence commissions.
Mr. The Maguire office told the committee that the complaint involved "potentially privileged issues", a language that raised eyebrows on Capitol Hill.
Mr. Klitenich writes that Mr Maguire will not appear Thursday for a hearing, as Mr Schiff requested, adding that "he is not available in such a short notice."
However, a senior intelligence officer stated that Mr Maguire wants to find a way to work with the committee and try to satisfy Mr Schiff's requests, while still ensuring that the whistle's identity is protected.
Mr. Schiff said he expects Mr Maguire to appear on Thursday, calling "if necessary". The intelligence agency's chief inspector has determined the complaint is "credible and urgent" and the commission must move quickly, Mr Schiff said.
n. Maguire was confirmed by the Senate as director of the National Counterterrorism Center, but was named acting director of national intelligence after Dan Coates stepped down in August and Trump administration deputy retired Sue Gordon.
His acting status put Mr. Maguire in a quandary between the White House, which is testing its loyalty and legislators demanding answers to their questions.