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Tipsheet

Grassley Argues The Whistleblower Should Be 'Heard Out And Protected'

AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

President Donald Trump has said he believes he should have the opportunity to confront the anonymous whistleblower who came forward about Trump's July call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. During the call, Trump asked Zelensky to investigate potential corruption between then-Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter's, connection to a Ukrainian gas company. Biden threatened to fire a prosecutor who was investigating the gas company which Hunter sat on the board of directors of.

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Former Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA), however, believes the whistleblower should be "heard out and protected."

“This person appears to have followed the whistleblower protection laws and ought to be heard out and protected. We should always work to respect whistleblowers’ requests for confidentiality. Any further media reports on the whistleblower’s identity don’t serve the public interest—even if the conflict sells more papers or attracts clicks," Grassley said in a statement.

“No one should be making judgments or pronouncements without hearing from the whistleblower first and carefully following up on the facts. Uninformed speculation wielded by politicians or media commentators as a partisan weapon is counterproductive and doesn’t serve the country," he explained.

According to the senator, it doesn't matter whether or not the whistleblower's information came second or third-hand; he still deserves to be protected.

“When it comes to whether someone qualifies as a whistleblower, the distinctions being drawn between first- and second-hand knowledge aren’t legal ones. It’s just not part of whistleblower protection law or any agency policy," the senator said. "Complaints based on second-hand information should not be rejected out of hand, but they do require additional leg work to get at the facts and evaluate the claim’s credibility."

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Grassley is Chair of the Senate Whistleblower Protection Caucus. He has been responsible for many of the laws that protect whistleblowers.

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