White House

Tom Cotton Lashes Out At Intelligence Community IG for Refusing to Elaborate on Whistleblower’s ‘Arguable Political Bias’

Sen. Tom Cotton speaks with reporters in Washington, D.C. (Aaron P. Bernstein/Reuters)

Senator Tom Cotton (R., Ark.) sent a letter to Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) Michael Atkinson on Wednesday demanding answers after reports emerged Tuesday that the whistleblower had a ‘professional relationship’ with a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate.

In Atkinson’s testimony to the Senate on Sept. 26, the ICIG refused to elaborate on his written report, which stated that there was an “indicia of an arguable political bias on the part of the [whistleblower] in favor of a rival political candidate.” But reports have surfaced that Atkinson elaborated on his original statement during his testimony before the House Intelligence Committee.

“Your disappointing testimony to the Senate Intelligence Committee on September 26 was evasive to the point of being insolent and obstructive,” Cotton’s letter reads. “… This information is, of course, unclassified and we were meeting in a closed setting. Yet you moralized about how you were duty bound not to share even a hint of this political bias with us.”

In his original Aug. 26 letter detailing the whistleblower’s accusations, Atkinson said that the individual’s political bias “did not change my determination that the complaint relating to the urgent concern ‘appears credible,’ particularly given the other information the ICIG obtained during its preliminary review.”

Cotton ends his letter with a number of demands, including asking Atkinson to confirm the reports that the whistleblower had some level of professional relationship with a Democratic presidential campaign, and to clarify which candidate and the nature of the relationship. The letter also demands that Atkinson explain why he did not bring up the facts during the September hearing.

“This information is urgently relevant for the American people and their elected representatives to evaluate the complainant’s credibility and to determine whether the House’s so-called impeachment has been, in reality, a well-coordinated partisan attack from the beginning,” Cotton concludes.

Most Popular

White House

More Evidence the Guardrails Are Gone

At the end of last month, just as the news of the Ukraine scandal started dominating the news cycle, I argued that we're seeing evidence that the guardrails that staff had placed around Donald Trump's worst instincts were in the process of breaking down. When Trump's staff was at its best, it was possible to draw ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Elizabeth Warren Is Not Honest

If you want to run for office, political consultants will hammer away at one point: Tell stories. People respond to stories. We’ve been a story-telling species since our fur-clad ancestors gathered around campfires. Don’t cite statistics. No one can remember statistics. Make it human. Make it relatable. ... Read More
National Review


Today is my last day at National Review. It's an incredibly bittersweet moment. While I've only worked full-time since May, 2015, I've contributed posts and pieces for over fifteen years. NR was the first national platform to publish my work, and now -- thousands of posts and more than a million words later -- I ... Read More
Economy & Business

Andrew Yang, Snake Oil Salesman

Andrew Yang, the tech entrepreneur and gadfly, has definitely cleared the bar for a successful cause candidate. Not only has he exceeded expectations for his polling and fundraising, not only has he developed a cult following, not only has he got people talking about his signature idea, the universal basic ... Read More

Is America Becoming Sinicized?

A little over 40 years ago, Chinese Communist strongman and reformer Deng Xiaoping began 15 years of sweeping economic reforms. They were designed to end the disastrous, even murderous planned economy of Mao Zedong, who died in 1976. The results of Deng’s revolution astonished the world. In four decades, ... Read More