A non-profit legal organization has raised more than $48,000 for the Trump administration official who first shared the contents of President Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
The unidentified whistleblower is set to cash in on all the funds, to cover his or her legal defense, once it crosses the $100,000 mark set under the “Help the Intelligence Officer Whistleblower” GoFundMe page.
“Well, this is a neat trick. D.C. lawyers have found a way to get a taxpayer subsidy of their legal fees?” Twitchy reports.
I just gave! https://t.co/Jwy7syR6ER
— Jon Cryer (@MrJonCryer) September 26, 2019
And, per the Washington Examiner:
The anonymous U.S. intelligence official accusing President Trump of improperly pressuring Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden is represented by two lawyers who run a group that offers financial help tofired whistleblowers.
Whistleblower Aid was launched in September 2017 — eight months after Trump’s inauguration — with an advertising blitz that involved mobile billboards being driven close to the White House, Congress, outside the Pentagon, and around the headquarters of the CIA and National Security Agency.
The group’s pledge of support, in addition to free legal representation including rent and mortgage assistance, media coaching, and doctor’s bills and counseling, is controversial among lawyers. Critics say it violates attorney ethics.
Whistleblower Aid was founded by veteran national security defense attorney Mark Zaid and John Tye, a whistleblower who worked to promote internet freedom at the State Department before warning of mass surveillance during the Obama administration. Andrew Bakaj, a former CIA officer who is associated with Zaid’s firm, is also a lawyer for Whistleblower Aid.
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We are working with anonymous intelligence officer whistleblower's legal team to raise money for their defense — please give now, tax-deductible:https://t.co/gsfQDfhqNKhttps://t.co/PFaPVgrr5f pic.twitter.com/DZfurefKua
— Whistleblower Aid (@wbaidlaw) September 26, 2019
According to the report, Whistleblower Aid was launched in 2017 with a $1.5 million donation from Tye who claims that it is “a pioneering, non-profit law firm that helps patriotic government employees and brave, private-sector workers report and publicizes their concerns.”
“We want to advise people what to do, whether it’s going to Congress, or an inspector general or Robert Mueller,” Tye continued.
“This is not a partisan effort,” he reportedly added. “At the same time, yes, the rule of law starts with the office of the president. Like many other people, we are definitely concerned about things that are happening in the administration. The decision to fire [FBI Director] James Comey. The lack of transparency. A lot of people have questions about whether this administration respects the rule of law.”
At the time of publication, the fundraiser had raised just over $48,300 from 1,300+ donors.