In Item #3 of this morning’s Warm-Up, I wrote, “The intelligence community quietly eliminated a requirement that whistleblowers provide direct, first-hand knowledge of alleged wrongdoings that had existed since May, 2018. The revised version of the whistleblower complaint form was not made public until after the transcript of the President’s July 25 phone call with the Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky. It had eliminated the first-hand knowledge requirement, allowing government employees to file whistleblower complaints even if they lack direct knowledge of underlying evidence and only “heard about [wrongdoing] from others.”
I now know that this description was misleading and incorrect, because my source had confused a change in the reporting form, which it documented with screen shots, with a change in the whistleblower law, which had remained the same. This was explained in a twitter thread by Julian Sanchez, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and a technology and privacy expert. I will note that based on the Federalist’s screen shot above, one can understand their confusion.
Twitter is terrible format to make a substantive argument or explain anything, but I guess Sanchez doesn’t have a blog or a Facebook account, or something. He writes that he contacted the site’s editor Mollie Hemingway and she didn’t correct the post.
[Notice of Correction: I had written here, erroneously, that the Federalist doesn’t allow comments. It does: I missed the tiny link at the bottom of the page. In fact, there are a lot of comments to that post. They are not helpful…]
I considered trying to put the following in coherent chronological order, but I’m just going to post Sanchez’s tweets as they appear on his feed: Continue reading