The White House, with an assist from Bill Barr's Department of Justice, has successfully blocked the House Intelligence Committee from accessing a whistleblower complaint that we now know related to, among other things, a call with the new President of Ukraine and could easily be described as extortion in exchange for the release of $400M of aid.
It looks like the stonewalling is over - for now.
Politico is reporting that the White House is "preparing to release to Congress by the end of the week both the whistleblower complaint and the Inspector General report that are at the center of House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry."
Well, that is quite a shift from "I did nothing wrong" and "It was a beautiful call."
It is important to note that this could change at any moment. A White House official stated that "the decision and timing could change over the next few days." It's cute that the White House and Donald Trump think they have any control over the release of a whistleblower complaint that the DNI determined as of "urgent nature" and a national security issue. The law is clear - whistleblower complaints SHALL be given to Congress. There is no asterisk that says "*with the approval of the White House".
Trump was widely mocked for stating that he would release a transcript of the call, no doubt heavily edited. He said: “You will see it was a very friendly and totally appropriate call. No pressure and, unlike Joe Biden and his son, NO quid pro quo! This is nothing more than a continuation of the Greatest and most Destructive Witch Hunt of all time."
Earlier today, the whistleblower's attorneys reached out to Rep. Adam Schiff about setting up private meetings with both the Senate and the House Intelligence Committees. The whistleblower's attorney's reached out to the DNI and received a letter that basically said "yeah, no" but using more legalese:
"Because your client's complaint involves confidential and potentially privileged communications by persons outside of the Intelligence Community, we are consulting with other Executive Branch stakeholders before transmitting to you the guidance sought."
That is a polite way of saying "we are desperately searching for a way to not give this really damaging information and are there going to try to get the President or the DOJ to come save us with a Hail Mary move."
Let's see if it is actually provided to Congress in the next few days and if the whistleblower is allowed to testify, as is planned, this Thursday.