Following President Trump’s vindication by the U.S. Senate earlier in the week, the Vindman twins were fired by the National Security Council (NSC) and escorted out of the White House by security on Friday.
Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman testified against Trump in the House impeachment inquiry. Brother Yevgeny, an NSC attorney, was also dismissed and the twins left the White House grounds together. Yevgeny Vindman worked in the office that vetted publications such as John Bolton’s manuscript.
Speech-slashing Speaker Nancy Pelosi seized on the administration’s move, saying, “I’m stunned by it,” and that “this goes too far.”
Pelosi on WH removing Vindman from NSC:
I’m stunned by it. I’ll talk to my colleagues. They have concerns about (President Trump’s) interventions with the military.
Pelosi on Vindman:
What a patriotic person. This goes too far.
— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) February 7, 2020
Pelosi on Vindman’s expected departure from WH: “I’m stunned by it. I’ll talk to my colleagues about this because I know they have some concern about some of the interventions that the president has with our military. That’s such a shame. What a patriotic person,” per @jeremyherb
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) February 7, 2020
As for Pelosi’s vow to talk to her colleagues, no doubt any and every move made by the administration going forward is fodder for the next iteration of leftist outrage and threats of Impeachment 2.0.
Reporters got wind of the Vindmans’ pending dismissal and asked Trump about the news that Alexander Vindman was getting the boot.
“I’m not happy with him,” Trump replied. “Am I supposed to be happy with him? I’m not.”
Alexander Vindman, who was on the controversial July 25 phone call between the U.S. and Ukrainian presidents, appeared before investigating lawmakers and offered an opinion that was nothing more than that–that he thought Trump’s discussion was “improper.” He said: “I was concerned by the call. I did not think it was proper to demand that a foreign government investigate a U.S. citizen, and I was worried about the implications for the U.S. Government’s support of Ukraine. I realized that if Ukraine pursued an investigation into the Bidens and Burisma, it would likely be interpreted as a partisan play which would undoubtedly result in Ukraine losing the bipartisan support it has thus far maintained. This would all undermine U.S. national security.”
“Today, Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman was escorted out of the White House where he has dutifully served his country and his President,’ his attorney said in a statement. “‘There is no question in the mind of any American why this man’s job is over, why this country now has one less soldier serving it at the White House,” he added.
Jerry Nadler, House Judiciary Committee Chairman groused about Vindman’s dismissal, calling it a “subversion of justice.”
He told reporters: “It’s more than just settling scores. This is a subversion of justice.”
When Vindman testified before the House investigators in November, he drew criticism for wearing his full dress Army uniform. Democrats cast him as a patriot and a hero who had been awarded the Purple Heart for an injury sustained in Iraq.
According to the Washington Examiner, Vindman worked with Eric Ciaramella on U.S. policy issues. Ciaramella is reportedly the infamous whistleblower who filed the complaint against the president regarding the Ukraine phone call.
White House officials told Bloomberg News that Vindman’s removal from the White House came as part of an effort to downsize the foreign policy bureaucracy.
Vindman’s next assignment is expected to be in the Pentagon.
Also on Friday, Gordon Sondland, U.S. ambassador to the European Union, announced in a statement that he too has been shown the way out from the Trump administration. “I was advised today that the president intends to recall me effective immediately as United States ambassador to the European Union,” he wrote.
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