Donald Trump Jr. tweets name of alleged whistleblower

For weeks, President Trump and his supporters have demanded the identity of the anonymous intelligence community whistleblower who triggered the impeachment inquiry be exposed.

On Wednesday, Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., revealed the name of the alleged whistleblower in a tweet.

Trump Jr. presented no evidence that the person identified is the whistleblower, though the name has been circulating in right-wing media and on Twitter for several days.

The tweet links to a Breitbart News article that claims the whistleblower worked in the Obama administration and “interfaced” with officials who “played key roles” in facilitating the infamous Trump dossier produced by former British spy Christopher Steele, citing as evidence that the individual’s name appears in email chains related to Ukraine policy.

The White House did not return a request for comment. Trump Jr. did not immediately return a request for comment.

In a statement to journalist Yashar Ali, the White House said neither the president nor any senior administration official was aware in advance of Trump Jr.’s tweet naming the alleged whistleblower.

At a Trump reelection rally in Kentucky on Monday, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., demanded the media unmask the whistleblower, despite federal whistleblower protection laws.

“Do your job and print his name!” Paul yelled as the president clapped.

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Donald Trump, Jr., son of US President Donald Trump, attends the 139th White House Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC, April 17, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Donald Trump's son Donald Trump Jr. arrives to speak during the second session of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Donald Trump Jr. speaks about his father, Republican Presidential nominee Donald J. Trump, at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni
Donald Trump Jr. pumps his fist after speaking about his father, Republican U.S. presidential nominee Donald Trump, during the second day at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Donald Trump Jr. speaks about his father, Republican Presidential nominee Donald J. Trump, at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Jim Young
Donald Trump Jr. speaks about his father, Republican Presidential nominee Donald J. Trump at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni
Donald Trump Jr. speaks about his father, Republican U.S. presidential nominee Donald Trump, during the second day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Donald Trump Jr. speaks about his father, Republican U.S. presidential nominee Donald Trump, during the second day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Donald Trump Jr. and his wife Vanessa attend the second day session at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Donald Trump Jr. speaks about his father, Republican U.S. presidential nominee Donald Trump, during the second day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Tiffany Trump. daughter of Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump, sits near her half-brother Donald Trump Jr. (C) during evening speeches at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 18, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump (L) smiles as his son Donald Trump Jr. speaks for a moment at a campaign rally in St. Clairsville, Ohio June 28, 2016. REUTERS/Aaron Josefczyk
Donald Trump Jr, son of Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump, tours the arena at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 19, 2016. REUTERS/Mark Kauzlarich
Donald Trump Jr. (R) kicks balloons into the crowd as Republican U.S. presidential nominee Donald Trump and vice presidential nominee Governor Mike Pence stand with their families onstage at the end of the final session of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. July 21, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Donald Trump Jr with his children arrives at Joint Base Andrews outside Washington, U.S., after Easter weekend in Palm Beach, Florida, April 16, 2017. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas
Donald Trump Jr. (R) makes remarks at a press conference while Joo Kim Tiah (C) the CEO of TA Global, the owner and developer of Trump International Hotel and Tower Vancouver, looks on with Eric Danziger the CEO of Trump Hotels (L) during the grand opening of the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada February 28, 2017. REUTERS/Nick Didlick
U.S. President Donald Trump and his son Donald Trump, Jr., watch children roll Easter Eggs at 139th annual White House Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, U.S., April 17, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Donald Trump, Jr., and Ivanka Trump arrive for the Presidential Inauguration of Trump at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., January 20, 2017. REUTERS/Saul Loeb/Pool
BOZEMAN, MT - APRIL 22: Donald Trump Jr. speaks at a rally for Republican Greg Gianforte as he campaigns for the Montana House of Representatives seat vacated by the appointment of Ryan Zinke to head the Department of Interior on April 22, 2017 in Bozeman, Montana. Gianforte is running against democrat Rob Quist in the special election to be held on May 25, 2017. (Photo by William Campbell/Corbis via Getty Images)
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On Tuesday, Paul threatened to reveal the whistleblower’s name himself.

Many of Paul’s Republican colleagues criticized him, saying the whistleblower deserves to be protected.

“We should follow the law,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn. “And I believe the law protects whistleblowers.”

“The whistleblower statute is there for a reason,” said Senate Majority Whip John Thune, R-S.D. “And I think we need to respect the law where whistleblowers are concerned.”

Andrew Bakaj, an attorney for the whistleblower, warned members of Congress not to expose his client’s identity.

“If Congress and others do not protect my client’s anonymity — which my client is afforded to by law — not only does it jeopardize their safety, but it jeopardizes an entire system that took decades to build,” Bakaj tweeted on Wednesday. “It will destroy effective Congressional oversight for years to come.”

“If the President or any Member of Congress engages in rhetoric or activity that places my client in danger, they will be held personally responsible,” Bakaj added. “As I have already stated: my team and I are keeping all options on the table.”

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