Second whistleblower comes forward after speaking with inspector general, attorney reveals

Sen. Mitt Romney takes questions from reporters at the Capitol

But after consulting with the Justice Department and White House attorneys, Maguire - recently named to his post by Trump - concluded that he was not obligated to inform Congress, saying the complaint fell short of the bar.

The existence of the second whistleblower followed stirrings of discontent within Trump's own Republican Party after he called on China on Friday to investigate Biden's son, who had business dealings in that country.

A second whistleblower has come forward, this one with first-hand information of the events that triggered an impeachment investigation of President Donald Trump for alleged abuse of power, the informant's lawyer said Sunday. That public request from President Trump calling on China to investigate Joe Biden.

Both whistleblowers are said to be members of the USA intelligence community, which has its own strict set of requirements to obtain protected status.

The emergence of the second whistleblower threatened to undermine arguments from Trump and his allies to discredit the original complaint.

It later emerged the whistleblower was not present for the call and based the complaint on second-hand information.

The first whistleblower complaint, filed with the inspector general on August 12, revealed information received from half a dozen United States officials expressing concern that Mr Trump was using the power of his office to seek information from a foreign country as he seeks re-election a second term in 2020.

By Friday, however, the president confirmed reports that the White House was preparing a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, arguing that Congress can not undertake an impeachment investigation without first having a vote to authorise it. The president wasn't being serious, Jordan said.

Asked if a resolution voted by the full House to approve an inquiry could help Democrats counter Republican efforts to discredit the investigation, Himes suggested it would be counterproductive to focus on trying to appease the concerns of their colleagues on the other side of the aisle.

The text messages showed that some USA diplomats had doubts about Trump's pressure on Zelensky, including allegedly freezing a $400 million military aid package. Among them is Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, another key figure in the probe.

Trump has mentioned Schiff ought to resign for "treason" for doing a parody of his telephone name with the Ukraine president in the course of the impeachment inquiry kickoff listening to.

He said the department sent a letter to Congress on Friday night as its initial response to the document request. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, another Democratic presidential candidate, said Trump is "acting like a global gangster".

A bit unusually, Trump stayed in the White House on Sunday rather than traveling or playing golf.

"The great Scam is being revealed!" Trump wrote at one point, continuing to paint himself as the victim of a "deep state" and hostile Democrats.

The president argued in his Twitter that the Utah Republican should be removed from office and that former Sen. Romney tweeted recently that Trump's "brazen and unprecedented appeal to China and to Ukraine" for an investigation of Biden is "wrong and appalling".

On Saturday, Mr Pompeo did not back off in his defence of Mr Trump's call with Ukraine.

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