The lawyer representing the Ukraine whistleblower sent a “cease and desist” letter to the White House this week telling the president that his rhetoric is putting his client in “physical danger.”
“I am writing out of deep concern that your client, the President of the United States, is engaging in rhetoric and activity that places my client, the Intelligence Community Whistleblower, and their family in physical danger,” Andrew Bakaj, the whistleblower’s lawyer, said in a letter obtained by CNN.
Bakaj added, “I am writing to respectfully request that you counsel your client on the legal and ethical peril in which he is placing himself should anyone be physically harmed as a result of his, or his surrogates’, behavior.”
Taking cues from Trump, Republicans have also amped up their reckless rhetoric directed toward the whistleblower, even openly hoping that the individual is exposed.
At the president’s campaign rally in Kentucky this week, Sen. Rand Paul nearly outed the whistleblower and even urged the media to print his or her name, despite the fact that there is a federal law that protects government whistleblowers.
Trump’s whistleblower attacks are both meaningless and dangerous
Donald Trump and his Republican defenders in Congress continue to attack the whistleblower as part of their flailing anti-impeachment strategy, but those attacks have become increasingly hollow as a growing number of Trump administration officials have come forward to confirm the president’s extortion scheme.
But just because the president’s war on the whistleblower is essentially meaningless to the ongoing impeachment inquiry, it doesn’t mean it doesn’t threaten the safety and wellbeing of the whistleblower.
Ultimately, Donald Trump isn’t helping his case when he smears the whistleblower on Twitter or at his unhinged rallies. What he is doing is putting somebody’s life in danger.