Maguire contradicts Trump: I think the whistleblower did the 'right thing'

Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire contradicted President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocrat calls on White House to withdraw ambassador to Belarus nominee TikTok collected data from mobile devices to track Android users: report Peterson wins Minnesota House primary in crucial swing district MORE on Thursday, telling Congress that he believes the whistleblower who raised concerns about Trump's interactions with Ukrainian officials did the "right thing" in a "unique and unprecedented" case.

"I think the whistleblower did the right thing," Maguire said to House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffGOP chairmen hit back at accusation they are spreading disinformation with Biden probe Schiff, Khanna call for free masks for all Americans in coronavirus aid package House Intelligence panel opens probe into DHS's involvement in response to protests MORE (D-Calif.) during public testimony, adding that they followed the whistleblower statute every step of the way.

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Maguire also expressed his support of the whistleblower, deeming the complaint "credible" and "important" while stating that he does not know the identity of the individual.

Trump has claimed that the whistleblower was a "political hack job."

“I believe this case is unique and unprecedented,” Maguire said on Thursday.

He also defended his decision not to share the complaint with the committee, noting that after consulting the Justice Department, it was determined that the conversation between Trump and another foreign leader was protected by executive privilege.

"Authority I do not have the privilege to waive," he added.

Democrats have blasted Maguire for withholding the complaint, which intelligence community Inspector General Michael Atkinson determined was both credible and an urgent concern.

Maguire's high-stakes testimony came roughly 30 minutes after the Intelligence panel released a minimally redacted version of the whistleblower complaint. In nine pages, it details concerns a whistleblower raised about Trump asking Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenNAACP seeks to boost Black voter turnout in six states Biden touts Trump saying Harris would be 'fine choice' for VP pick Kamala Harris: The conventional (and predictable) pick all along MORE and his son.

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiKamala Harris makes history — as a Westerner On The Money: McConnell says it's time to restart coronavirus talks | New report finds majority of Americans support merger moratorium | Corporate bankruptcies on pace for 10-year high McConnell: Time to restart coronavirus talks MORE (D-Calif.) announced Tuesday that Democrats are formally launching an impeachment inquiry after a new wave of House Democrats came out in favor of the process in the wake of the allegations.

— This report was updated at 10:54 a.m.