WASHINGTON - The debate continues in Washington over whether the whistleblower’s identity should be revealed. 

Locally, U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) is still pushing for safeguards to protect that person’s identity. That’s despite a big push by Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, a Republican, to reveal that person’s identity.

Earlier this week, Paul single-handedly rejected Hirono’s resolution to protect the unknown tipster. All of this comes ahead of the first public hearings in the inquiry next week.

“When that person comes forward, we should protect that person’s identity,” Hirono told KITV this week. “That person should not be subjected to threats, intimidation, retaliation, all of which is very possible.”

Sen. Brian Schatz has also called for protecting the whistleblower’s identity.