Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire's testimony before the House Intelligence Committee just wrapped.
The hearing started just moments after a whistleblower's complaint against President Trump was released. The complaint alleges that Trump abused his official powers "to solicit interference" from Ukraine in the upcoming 2020 election, and the White House took steps to cover it up.
Here's what we learned at the hearing:
- On the timing of the complaint: Maguire said the whistleblower's complaint centered around a phone call between President Trump and a foreign leader — a kind of conversation that is "typically subject to executive privilege." That's why he didn't release it earlier.
- On the whistleblower's motives: Maguire said he believes both the whistleblower who filed the complaint against President Trump and the inspector general who handled it "acted in good faith."
- On the nature of the complaint: The acting spy chief said the case that they're discussing today is "unique and unprecedented" compared to other whistleblower cases he is aware of.
- On the whistleblower's identity: Maguire said he doesn't know who the whistleblower is. Trump never asked him to find out the identity of the whistleblower, he said.
- On protecting elections: Maguire said "the greatest challenge" the intelligence community has right now is maintaining "the integrity of our election system."
- On foreign help in elections: The spy chief said that if a president pressured a foreign government for help winning an election, it would be “unwarranted,” “unwelcome” and “bad for the nation" — but he did not say if it was illegal.