House Dems Conceal Testimony Of 18th Witness- IC IG Michael Atkinson

catkinZ8a

Where are the transcripts from your 18th witness Michael Atkinson , eh Schiff?

What's that?

You don't even want to acknowledge that there even was an 18th witness in your basement sham proceedings?

Why's that?

Because it's favorable to the POTUS?

Cough it up, Schiff!

House Democrats conceal testimony of 18th witness from Trump team

Rep. John Ratcliffe: 'The reason it hasn't been released is it's not helpful to Adam Schiff'

By Alex Swoyer and S.A. Miller - The Washington Times - Thursday, January 23, 2020

Democrats clamoring for more witnesses at President Trump’s impeachment trial are concealing one of those questioned in the House investigation, President Trump’s defense team says.

Rep. Adam B. Schiff, California Democrat, and other impeachment managers repeatedly talk about the 17 witnesses interviewed during the House’s secretive depositions. But they do not mention an 18th witness, Michael Atkinson, the intelligence community’s inspector general who has firsthand knowledge of the origins of the whistleblower complaint that led to the impeachment.

Members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence who conducted the interview are barred from disclosing details. But Republicans on the committee said the testimony should be heard at the president’s impeachment trial in the Senate.

“The reason it hasn’t been released is it’s not helpful to Adam Schiff. It is not helpful to the whistleblower,” said Rep. John Ratcliffe, Texas Republican, who took part in the October interview with Mr. Atkinson. “It raises credibility issues about both of them.”

The potentially exculpatory evidence for Mr. Trump has remained classified and is not part of the record for the impeachment trial.

Because it remains classified, only members of the intelligence committee have seen it and Mr. Trump’s legal team is denied a copy.

Mr. Trump is on trial for two articles of impeachment: abuse of power for asking Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joseph R. Biden, one of Mr. Trump’s potential opponents in November, and obstruction of Congress for not cooperating with the House impeachment inquiry.

The president acknowledged that he wanted Ukraine to look into any corruption involving Mr. Biden and into allegations that the country meddled in U.S. elections in 2016. He said both are legitimate investigations.

After two days of hearing the impeachment case, Senate Republicans appear poised to acquit Mr. Trump of the charges House Democrats approved on a party-line vote Dec. 18.

Mr. Atkinson’s briefing for House lawmakers covered the origins of the whistleblower complaint that led to the two articles of impeachment. Mr. Trump’s supporters charge that the whistleblower was part of a scheme to take down the president and that the complaint was coordinated by Mr. Schiff, chairman of the intelligence committee and the lead House impeachment manager prosecuting the case.

Mr. Schiff denies he had contact with the whistleblower, but it was later revealed that his staff met with the whistleblower before the complaint was filed with Mr. Atkinson.

The whistleblower is said to be a CIA analyst assigned to the White House who has ties to the Democratic Party and Mr. Biden.

Mr. Atkinson met with Mr. Schiff and his committee in October to discuss the whistleblower complaint in detail. House and Senate members were first briefed about the complaint when news of the whistleblower became public in September.

But the closed-door committee session remains a focus of House Republicans with knowledge of the interview.

Mr. Ratcliffe said they have demanded the release of a transcript of the interview, especially because Mr. Atkinson identified other fact witnesses.

“It addresses the issue about contacts between Schiff, his staff and the whistleblower, and what the inspector general knows about that. So those are material facts that should be talked about, but Adam Schiff has prevented that,” Mr. Ratcliffe told The Washington Times.

An official on Mr. Schiff’s committee staff said the briefing with Mr. Atkinson was not conducted with the other two committees involved in the impeachment investigation, the Foreign Affairs and Oversight and Reform committees, and therefore did not qualify as a deposition.

“Contrary to what has been said,” the official said, “the chairman does not have the ability unilaterally to classify or declassify [an intelligence committee] transcript.”

Mr. Ratcliffe said that whatever Mr. Schiff wants to call it — a deposition or a transcribed interview — the information is important for the American people to see.

“His testimony was noticed three days after the impeachment inquiry was announced. There is a 179-page transcript of questions and the IG’s answers under oath … same as with the impeachment inquiry interviews and depositions,” Mr. Ratcliffe said.

It is unclear whether any part of the transcribed interview has been shared with members of the Senate Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. A spokeswoman for the committee said she will not discuss committee materials.

During a break in the trial, Sen. Joni Ernst, Iowa Republican, said House Democrats should have submitted the transcript.

“We should be allowed to take a look at that, but again they have stated numerous times in their brief they had overwhelming evidence — it would be so clear to everyone — and I haven’t seen that yet,” she said.

On their second day of arguments, House impeachment managers hammered at the president’s defense that the investigations requested of Ukraine were legitimate.

The investigations, they said, were intended only to benefit Mr. Trump’s reelection bid by wounding Mr. Biden and countering the perception that Mr. Trump’s 2016 election was illegitimate.

Key to that argument is Mr. Biden’s public boasting that as vice president he threatened to block $1 billion in loan guarantees unless Ukrainian leaders fired the country’s chief prosecutor.

The prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, had looked into corruption at Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings, where Hunter Biden landed a $50,000-a-month job on the board of directors while his father led Obama administration efforts in Kyiv.

Mr. Biden’s muscling of Ukraine to fire the country’s chief prosecutor was Obama administration policy, not a bid to protect his son, the House impeachment managers argued.

Rep. Sylvia R. Garcia, a Texas Democrat on the prosecution team, said Mr. Shokin’s successor was more likely to investigate Burisma.

“It would actually increase chances of a Burisma investigation,” she said.

Impeachment managers also characterized Mr. Trump’s belief in Ukrainian interference as a debunked conspiracy theory prompted by Russia to obscure its own interference in U.S. elections.

“That’s what Donald Trump wanted investigated or announced — this completely bogus Kremlin-pushed conspiracy theory,” Mr. Schiff told the Senate.

Mr. Trump’s defenders, though, cite Kyiv’s public opposition to Mr. Trump during the campaign and cooperation with the Democratic National Committee in conducting opposition research.

DNC contractor Alexandra Chalupa has acknowledged working with the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington to dig up dirt on Mr. Trump and his campaign manager, Paul Manafort. The episode was detailed last year by Politico.

Republicans repeatedly mentioned Ms. Chalupa during two weeks of public hearings on impeachment that were conducted by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, credited the impeachment managers with executing a preemptive strike against Mr. Trump’s defense team, which will begin presenting its case Saturday.

“They are preempting the president’s lawyers, who we know will make false arguments,” Mr. Schumer said.

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/jan/23/michael-atkinson-testimony-concealed-adam-schiff/

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Comments (23)
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Nana H

It wasn't concealed. It's classified

Republicans were in attendance. They know exactly what he said.

Next.........

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Toby

Nothingburger. They want Atkinson so they can put the whistleblower, Schiff, and the Bidens on trial instead of Trump.

How 'bout we look into Schiff and the Bidens and anyone else you'd like after the GOP votes to remove Trump from office?

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Izzy Mn(4)

Just a distraction. Look over here, not over there. Typical Trump administration behavior. Doesn't make Trump any less guilty.

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cattyles

Washington Times!

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mudhouse

Schiff classified it as "secret." My understanding is that Trump, as president, can order a review of legislatively classified testimony and declassify it.

Of course, then people would fall over backwards in a dead faint and claim that Trump was outing the whistleblower's identity in order to help his own defense against impeachment.

So, why not redact the whistleblower's name from the testimony, to protect his identity, and release it?

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Nana H

Mudhouse, I have no idea what the testimony included but I think the details of who , and why, it was held up before sending to Congress , including Barr's involvement , may be part of it . Perhaps that is why the Republican members who were privy to the testimony are not asking for it's release.

The games are many and they aren't the purview of any one side. The best thing that could ever happen is for the American people to come together and say ......They are ALL lying to us, they are ALL manipulating us and we have had it !!!

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mudhouse

Nana, I don't know if Republicans have made formal requests for Schiff to release Atkinson's testimony, but earlier this month Nunes stated to reporters that the Republicans have an active investigation into Intelligence Community Inspector General Atkinson. If the Repubs who've read the testimony aren't formally requesting it, maybe it's because they're involved in an active investigation. (I don't know.)

Nunes implied that Atkinson either lied or will need to make corrections to his testimony. I haven't found anything about how or when the investigation into Atkinson will proceed, but it's clear to me that many in the public are aware that Schiff is withholding it for a reason...and they would like to know why.

Trump's attorneys dealt with the question of whether or not the DOJ handled the complaint incorrectly (I think it was in yesterday's proceedings, but I'd have to go find it.) There were no inconsistencies with how it was handled.

If I had a crystal ball (I wish) I would say that Atkinson's testimony is being withheld because it contains information that would show how the complaint originated, and it may show contact with Schiff or his staff that contradicts what the public has been told.

If that's true, simply redacting the whistleblower's name wouldn't be enough to hide Schiff's role in originating this complaint. I suspect a simple name redaction isn't going to cut it...or somebody would be suggesting it as a compromise.

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Nana H

Nunes words are every bit as questionable as Schiff's given his lies about Parnas and the fact he is currently being investigated by the ethics committee.

Facts are none of us know exactly why the testimony is classified and I think we all go off track by assuming, guessing or believing what we are being told is true. That goes for both sides. It's a mess

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Nana H

Interesting that Roberts has told the Senators he will refuse to ask any question that includes or requests the WB' s name.

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

Nunes stated to reporters

Devin is personally involved in the Ukraine mess -- Parnas has shared that information.

Everything that Nunes says about the Ukraine scandal should be viewed through the prism of a congressman trying to protect his own backside.

*

If Nunes had a shred of integrity, he would recuse himself from anything Ukraine.

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mudhouse

Well, the information in the Nunes Memo that had everybody up in arms was vindicated by the Horowitz report, and I didn't see anybody in the media lining up to apologize to him.

Kind of funny to be holding up somebody who wears an ankle bracelet as the more credible voice in a discussion about whose words are the least trustworthy.

We all harbor our unconfirmed suspicions about the guys on the other side. Maybe 2020 will drag some things out into the daylight. After the revelations in the Horowitz report, and the recent revelations about the invalid FISA warrants on Carter Page, I think the public's appetite for information will go up, and not down.

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Nana H

Mudhouse, Nunes lied about knowing and talking to Parnas. He finally admitted it. He lied....Why ? Lying about stuff like that leaves me cold.



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lurker111

Someone is trying to make up for lost income.

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adoptedbyhounds

"If I had a crystal ball (I wish) I would say that Atkinson's testimony is being withheld because it contains information that would show how the complaint originated, and it may show contact with Schiff or his staff that contradicts what the public has been told."

I think you're on to something big. Atkinson called the WB complaint of "urgent importance." His boss disagreed. We are told the revised complaint form used by the WB was put "in place" shortly before Atkinson's swearing in. It made second hand information acceptable. So what does "in place" mean? Was it "in place" for download on the website? That's not what they said. Is the website where Adam Schiff's staff got the form? If not, did Atkinson provide the form? If so, did he disclose that information? And why did Schiff say "we" want to talk to the WB, when he knew his staff already had? Did Atkinson or others talk to the WB?

The Disclosure of Urgent Concern form the Complainant submitted on August 12, 2019 is
the same form the ICIG has had in place since May 24, 2018, which went into effect before
Inspector General Atkinson entered on duty as the Inspector General of the Intelligence
Community on May 29, 2018, following his swearing in as the Inspector General of the
Intelligence Community on May 17, 2018. Although the form requests information about whether
the Complainant possesses first-hand knowledge about the matter about which he or she is lodging
the complaint, there is no such requirement set forth in the statute. In fact, by law the Complainant
– or any individual in the Intelligence Community who wants to report information with respect
to an urgent concern to the congressional intelligence committees – need not possess first-hand
information in order to file a complaint or information with respect to an urgent concern. The
ICIG cannot add conditions to the filing of an urgent concern that do not exist in law. Since
Inspector General Atkinson entered on duty as the Inspector General of the Intelligence
Community, the ICIG has not rejected the filing of an alleged urgent concern due to a
whistleblower’s lack of first-hand knowledge of the allegations.


https://www.dni.gov/files/ICIG/Documents/News/ICIG%20News/2019/September%2030%20-%20Statement%20on%20Processing%20of%20Whistleblower%20Complaints/ICIG%20Statement%20on%20Processing%20of%20Whistleblower%20Complaints.pdf



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mudhouse

Adopted, there's also a connection between Michael Atkinson and the Schiff's House Intelligence Committee.

Before he became Intelligence Community Inspector General, Atkinson was the Deputy Assistant Attorney General, and he was also senior counsel to Mary McCord. Essentially, he was McCord's lawyer.

Mary McCord was the Assistant Attorney General of the National Security Division, and she lead the investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, before she was resigned in April 2017.

After the mid term election in 2018, McCord showed up as part of the Lawfare group. Now McCord works for Schiff's House committee.

So, the IG who brought forth the whistleblower complaint used to be counsel for an attorney who currently works for Schiff.

I'd like to know if the changes to the whistleblower complaint form came about as a result of communication between McCord and Atkinson.

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Ziemia(6a)

More conspiracy weaving. Apparently, everyone who doesn't do what Trump & Fox & friends demand are engaged in a secret & nefarious effort to unseat Trump.

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mudhouse

Well, that's what folks on the left said when people on the right questioned the sound basis for Carter Page's FISA warrants, too. Hmmm.

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elvis

I sincerely hope that many here don't ever end up on a jury.

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Nana H

I think that should read " all here " rather than " many here" if your criteria is having formed an opinion on Trump' s guilt regarding this matter.

Implying people could not be impartial jurors in a real trial because they have made up their mind on this is silly.

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adoptedbyhounds

"It wasn't concealed. It's classified."

Not an either or situation.

Classification and concealment are both in place.

"I'd like to know if the changes to the whistleblower complaint form came about as a result of communication between McCord and Atkinson."

We are all entitled to the answer to that question.



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catkinZ8a

How much money has Bolton accepted from Ukrainians?

Wow, the Ukraine is turning out to be the deep state honey-pot, or sugar daddy, or whatever...

Funnel Billions of US Tax Dollars to Ukraine, receive millions in kickbacks and deals...

Rinse and repeat .

The fleecing of 'We The People'

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catkinZ8a

Paul Sperry

@paulsperry_

·Jan 29


The 1 witness transcript Schiff won't release (out of 18) talks about Schiff and the "whistleblower"--and how the inspector general (an Obama holdover) who facilitated the "whistleblower," failed to investigate prior contacts between the "whistleblower" & Schiff's staff


Question for House manager Schiff:
Q: "Why are you classifying & effectively burying from public view the 179-page transcript of ICIG Michael Atkinson's testimony before your impeachment committee, when you have released all other witness transcripts? How is this "transparency"?




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adoptedbyhounds

Good stuff on his twitter account, catkin.

https://twitter.com/paulsperry_

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