President Donald Trump told reporters on Monday that he and his allies are working to uncover the identity of the intelligence community whistleblower who is entitled under the law to federal protection.
Per Los Angeles Times White House reporter Chris Megerian, Trump was asked about the identity of the whistleblower who has accused him of abusing his office, and the president replied that "we're trying to find out" their identity.
“We’re trying to find out” who the whistleblower is, Trump told reporters just now. The whistleblower is entitled… https://t.co/UD3EAUESdQ— Chris Megerian (@Chris Megerian)1569868735.0
Under federal law, whistleblowers are entitled to have their identities protected to prevent against retaliation.
Andrew Bakaj, an attorney representing the anonymous whistleblower, immediately fired back at the president on Twitter and emphasized the legal protections that his client must be allowed.
"The Intel Community Whistleblower is entitled to anonymity," he wrote on Twitter. "Law and policy support this and the individual is not to be retaliated against. Doing so is a violation of federal law."
IC WB UPDATE: The Intel Community Whistleblower is entitled to anonymity. Law and policy support this and the indiv… https://t.co/lMpk2hUkhh— Andrew P. Bakaj (@Andrew P. Bakaj)1569868912.0
Trump has repeatedly attacked the whistleblower, and last week the president likened them to a "spy." Some legal experts have said that Trump's attacks on the unidentified individual could wind up as articles of impeachment, as they amount to witness intimidation.