From what I can ascertain, no elected Republicans were willing to go on the Sunday morning political talk shows and defend the president against calls for his impeachment and removal from office. Instead, Joe “Deadbeat Dad” Walsh, a one-term tea-bagging ex-congressman from Illinois, went on the teevee and said that Trump is guilty as hell and his behavior offers no defense.
That could be because there are now “multiple” whistleblowers in the Ukraine call case, at least one of whom as more direct knowledge of the call that the original whistleblower.
The legal team for the whistle-blower alarmed by President Trump’s dealings with Ukraine is now representing a second whistle-blower, an intelligence official with firsthand knowledge of the president’s interactions, the ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos reported Sunday.
The new whistle-blower has already been interviewed by the intelligence community’s inspector general’s office, but has not yet communicated with any congressional committees, Mr. Stephanapoulos said on his show, “This Week.”
A little further down in that New York Times article, we see this:
Mr. [Mark] Zaid works for Compass Rose Legal Group, a law firm that specializes in representing whistle-blowers. He is part of the legal team that is now representing both individuals who have come forward. The team also includes Andrew P. Bakaj, the lead lawyer, and Charles McCullough III.
“I can confirm that my firm and my team represent multiple whistleblowers in connection to the underlying August 12, 2019, disclosure to the Intelligence Community Inspector General,” Mr. Bakaj said on Twitter. “No further comment at this time.”
It’s true that some people are not very precise with English usage, but “multiple” ordinarily means “more than two.”
A lot of initial White House pushback on this scandal has focused on the fact that the original “rat” or “spy” only knew about the phone call secondhand. This was never a responsive defense, but it could serve some limited purpose in giving people something to say other than it’s okay to extort political help from a foreign country.
It looks like this motivated the second whistleblower to come forward. He or she will be a stronger witness. They can tell us, for example, if they think the transcript that was released is complete and accurate.
We can already see an early consequence. Without even bad talking points to steel their nerves, no elected Republican was willing to stick their neck out on Sunday morning to provide cover for Trump.