Trump-Ukraine Whistleblower Agrees To Answer Written Questions; GOP Calls 'Sunday Narrative Ambush'

The CIA employee whose whistleblower complaint is at the heart of Democrats' impeachment proceedings has finally agreed to speak with lawmakers in writing after he reportedly got cold feet last week.

According to the Washington Examiner, the whistleblower's attorney Mark Zaid said that he had contacted Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) "to submit through legal team written questions to WBer." Zaid says that the questions "cannot seek identifying info."

This comes after RealClearPolitics' Paul Sperry outed the whistleblower as 33-year-old Eric Ciaramella - an Obama administration holdover who worked with former CIA Director John Brennan.

Zaid told CBS on Saturday night that his client wants to be as bipartisan as possible throughout this process while remaining anonymous. The attorney noted that accepting written questions will allow the whistleblower to protect his or her identity from Republicans, who have asked that the whistleblower be identified. -Washington Examiner

According to the report, however, Congressional Republicans, say the whistleblower's new offer was nothing more than a ploy to make headlines in a "Sunday narrative ambush" timed for discussion on national morning shows.

"I have never received that offer, and I'm the lead Republican," said House minority leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), noting that Nunes hadn't notified him of any letter as of Sunday morning.

McCarthy also thinks House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) should be forced to testify, as Ciaramella met with Schiff's staff (a contact Schiff lied about).

Last week the Examiner reported that Ciaramella's attorneys had broken off discussions with lawmakers regarding testimony in the case.

On Sunday, President Trump tweeted that the whistleblower "must come forward" to explain their concerns over a July 25 phone conversation between Trump and Ukraine's President Volodomyr Zelensky, in which Trump asked that Ukraine investigate the Biden family and other matters.

"Reveal the Whistleblower and end the Impeachment Hoax!" Trump tweeted Sunday.

More on Ciaramella and his connections:

More on Ciaramella via RedState's  Elizabeth Vaughn, emphasis ours:

He submitted a whistleblower complaint on August 12th.

He is a registered Democrat.

He is a CIA analyst who specializes in Russia and Ukraine. He ran the Ukraine desk at the National Security Council (NSC) in 2016.

He was detailed over to the NSC in the summer of 2015 and worked for then-National Security Adviser Susan Rice.

He worked for former Vice President Joe Biden when he served as the Obama administration’s “point man” for Ukraine. He may have flown over to Ukraine with Biden on Air Force Two.

He worked for former CIA Director John Brennan and appeared to have been a highly valued employee.

In June 2017, then-National Security Advisor H. R. McMaster appointed EC to be his personal aide.

EC did not have direct knowledge of the July 25th conversation between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. It is very possible he learned about the call from NSC Director for European Affairs Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, who testified last week before Adam Schiff’s House Intelligence Committee.

EC contacted at least one of Schiff’s staff members prior to filing his complaint. Two of EC’s colleagues from the NSC were hired by Adam Schiff this year, one of whom, Sean Misko, was hired in August.

He was posted to the NSC in the White House’s West Wing in mid-2017 and “left amid concerns about negative leaks to the media. He has since returned to CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.”

EC worked with hyper-partisan Ukrainian-American lawyer and activist Alexandra Chalupa in 2016 to dig up dirt on Trump. (Chalupa’s name will become very familiar as this scandal unravels.) The pro-Hillary Chalupa, a former DNC contractor, has worked in the Clinton administration and has held various staff positions for Democratic lawmakers. Sperry wrote: “Documents confirm the DNC opposition researcher attended at least one White House meeting with Ciaramella in November 2015.  She visited the White House with a number of Ukrainian officials lobbying the Obama administration for aid for Ukraine.”

Sperry reported that “federal records show Biden’s office invited Ciaramella to an October 2016 state luncheon the vice president hosted for Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. Other invited guests included Brennan, as well as then-FBI Director James Comey and then-National Intelligence Director James Clapper.  (Sperry: Several U.S. officials told RCI that the invitation that was extended to Ciaramella, a relatively low-level GS-13 federal employee, was unusual and signaled he was politically connected inside the Obama White House.) -RedState

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