Grassley: Up to whistleblower to reveal identity

Sen. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyBurr says intelligence watchdog should be 'independent' after inspector general firing Lawmakers press IRS to get coronavirus checks to seniors Pelosi floats undoing SALT deduction cap in next coronavirus bill MORE (R-Iowa) said Monday that it is up to the whistleblower at the center of the impeachment inquiry to decide whether or not to come forward after President TrumpDonald John TrumpCampaigns face attack ad dilemma amid coronavirus crisis Outgoing inspector general says Trump fired him for carrying out his 'legal obligations' Trump hits Illinois governor after criticism: 'I hear him complaining all the time' MORE urged the media to reveal the individual's identity.

"That's strictly up to the whistleblower," Grassley told reporters.

When asked if Trump's remarks on Sunday were appropriate, the Iowa Republican demurred.

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"All I want to do is make sure the law is followed," he said. "A person like me that has advocated for whistleblowers for a long period of time, including this whistleblower, I want maximum protection for whistleblowers."

Trump and some of his GOP allies on Capitol Hill have been publicly calling for the whistleblower to be unmasked, arguing that the president should be able to confront the individual, whose complaint helped spur the House inquiry.

Trump told reporters on Sunday that they "would be doing the public a service" if they disclosed the individual's identity.

"They know who it is. You know who it is. You just don't want to report it. CNN knows who it is, but you don't want to report it," Trump said. "You know, you’d be doing the public a service if you did."

Grassley has repeatedly defended the whistleblower, and said last month that the individual deserved to be "heard out and protected."

Lawyers for the whistleblower have said that the individual would be willing to answer questions from both the House and Senate Intelligence Committee in writing and under oath.

Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGraham asks colleagues to support call for China to close wet markets Justice IG pours fuel on looming fight over FISA court Trump says he's considering restricting travel to coronavirus 'hot spots' MORE (R-S.C.), an ally of the president's who is a member of neither committee, said on Monday that Trump "must have full right of confrontation regarding the whistleblower." Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrBurr says intelligence watchdog should be 'independent' after inspector general firing 2020 on my mind: Democrats have to think like Mitch McConnell Loeffler traded .4M in stocks as Congress responded to coronavirus pandemic MORE (R-N.C.) also told The Hill late last week that the offer, which was also outlined in The Washington Post last month, was "not acceptable."

House Democrats in September launched an impeachment inquiry amid reports that Trump pressured the president of Ukraine to investigate 2020 Democratic presidential front-runner Joe BidenJoe BidenCampaigns face attack ad dilemma amid coronavirus crisis Biden to host 'virtual fireside chat' with donors Esper faces tough questions on dismissal of aircraft carrier's commander MORE and his son. No evidence of criminal wrongdoing by the Bidens has emerged. 

Trump has repeatedly said he did nothing wrong.