President Trump took to Twitter this morning to criticize the whistleblower who sparked the impeachment inquiry and demand that the person "come forward."
Trump claims the "Fake News Media knows" who the whistleblower is and doesn't want to reveal the person's identity because "there would be hell to pay."
The tweet comes after Democrats and Republicans got into a shouting match behind closed doors Tuesday while interviewing a witness in the impeachment investigation, with Democrats accusing Republicans of trying to out the anonymous whistleblower, according to five sources from both parties.
House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff objected to a line of questioning from Republicans during the deposition of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the National Security Council official in charge of Ukraine policy, charging that the GOP questions were part of an effort to out the whistleblower, sources said.
Republicans pushed back, arguing they were simply asking questions about who Vindman might have spoken with — and that it was not an effort to out the whistleblower.
Fight over whistleblower rights: Once the deposition began, tensions quickly ratcheted up over the identity of the whistleblower. One Democratic lawmaker said that Schiff told lawmakers the whistleblower had the statutory right to anonymity, which is what prompted GOP Rep. Mark Meadows of North Carolina to interject.
Schiff told him that when he was finished, he could speak, the source said. Meadows responded that he read the statute, and the whistleblower had no right to anonymity.
Meadows argued that the whistleblower had a right to protection from retribution, but not a right to anonymity, according to the source, which prompted Schiff to respond that the committee would not allow that line of questioning.
Read Trump's tweet below: