GOP motions to subpoena whistleblower

Republican lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee jumped in ahead of opening statements from Wednesday's impeachment witnesses to call for a subpoena to compel testimony from the whistleblower who triggered the inquiry.

Rep. Mike ConawayKenneth (Mike) Michael ConawayEx-Sen. Cory Gardner joins lobbying firm If Congress can't work together to address child hunger we're doomed Ex-Rep. Mike Conaway, former aide launch lobbying firm MORE (R-Texas) motioned that the committee subpoena the whistleblower for a closed-door hearing.

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Rep. Jim JordanJames (Jim) Daniel JordanWith extreme gerrymanders locking in, Biden needs to make democracy preservation job one Jim Jordan reveals he had COVID-19 this summer The Memo: Gosar censured, but toxic culture grows MORE (R-Ohio), who was added to the committee to bolster Trump's defense, then pushed Intelligence Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden to update Americans on omicron; Congress back Sunday shows - Spotlight shifts to omicron variant Schiff: Jan. 6 panel decision on charges for Meadows could come this week MORE (D-Calif.) for details on when the panel might vote to subpoena the whistleblower.

Schiff said the committee would have to vote to subpoena the whistleblower, and that such a vote would wait until after witness testimony.

Democrats, who hold the majority on the committee, seem certain to kill a motion to subpoena the whistleblower, who first raised concerns about Trump's July 25 call with the Ukrainian president.

Since the whistleblower's complaint, most if not all of the allegations have been overtaken by testimony from witnesses, who have testified about their concerns that Trump was pressuring Ukraine to conduct politically motivated investigations of former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenDearborn office of Rep. Debbie Dingell vandalized Pfizer to apply for COVID-19 booster approval for 16- and 17-year-olds: report Coronavirus variant raises fresh concerns for economy MORE and his son, Hunter.

Democrats have argued there is no reason to bring in the whistleblower given the subsequent testimony, and the whistleblower's attorneys have argued their client's anonymity should be respected.

Rep. Elise StefanikElise Marie StefanikRepublicans eager to take on Spanberger in Virginia Israel signals confidence in its relationship with Biden House GOP seek to block Biden from reopening Palestinian mission in Jerusalem MORE (R-N.Y.) questioned Schiff on whether he would block lawmakers from asking certain questions of witnesses. Schiff responded that he would only do so if it members were seeking to publicize the identity of the whistleblower. 

"We will do everything necessary to protect the whistleblower's identity, and I'm disturbed to hear members of the committee ... seek to undermine those protections by outing the whistleblower," Schiff said.

Trump and his Republican allies have made the anonymous whistleblower a central part of their efforts to undermine allegations of wrongdoing by the president. Trump and Republicans have called for the whistleblower to testify, despite the additional testimony and documents corroborating the bulk of the individual's original claims.

GOP members of the Intelligence Committee on Wednesday displayed a poster that alleged Schiff has known the identity of the whistleblower for more than 90 days.

But Schiff has said those claims are false and that he does not know the person's identity.

Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulCotton swipes at Fauci: 'These bureaucrats think that they are the science' Paul, Cruz fire back after Fauci says criticism of him is 'dangerous' No deal in sight as Congress nears debt limit deadline MORE (R-Ky.) and Donald Trump Jr.Don TrumpHow Trump uses fundraising emails to remain undisputed leader of the GOP Donald Trump Jr. joins Cameo Book claims Trump family members were 'inappropriately' close with Secret Service agents MORE are among those who have tweeted out the name of the person they believe is the whistleblower, despite federal laws offering protections to those who flag government abuse through the proper channels.