Trump Moves Against Impeachment Witnesses [Updated]

President Donald Trump has moved against two of the most prominent witnesses at his impeachment hearings in the House with the removal of Gordon Sondland, the U.S. Ambassador to the European Union and Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the top Ukraine policy officer on the National Security Counsel. There is no question that the President has a right to remove them and Vindman is not being “fired” but rather being transferred to a Defense Department post. Both ignored instructions from the White House not to appear in Congress. Yet, the timing smacks of retaliation against witnesses and the White House has not offered a full explanation of the action. Previously, a Pentagon official pledged that no retaliation against Vindman would be tolerated, but that might not include a transfer. What is particularly concerning is the removal of the twin brother of Vindman who did not testify and merely went with his brother as emotional support at the hearing.

A president is entitled to a staff that he trusts, but the timing was clearly meant to send a message. It was a message that most senators did not want to hear. Senators like Susan Collins could well lose her seat over her vote and this move will only further enrage many in Maine. Most of us expected that these witnesses would be gradually moved to new posts or they would (like a number of other witnesses) voluntarily retire or leave government work. Vindman was expected to leave this post soon, as is common for such positions. It would have been easy to allow such transitions to occur gradually but Trump clearly wanted to counterpunch. It is a tendency that many of us have criticized in the past. Indeed, he effectively counterpunched his way into this impeachment.

Yet, again, I am most disturbed by the removal of Vindman’s twin brother Yevgeny, who serves as a senior lawyer on the NSC. Why? It smacks of familial retribution or Roman-style decimation. Some senators have suggested that they want to look more closely at Vindman’s conduct but there have been no allegations raised about the conduct of Yevgeny Vindman.

I have long criticized President Trump’s tendency to counterpunch when a more restrained approach would better advance his agenda and support his allies. This is one such example. At a minimum, the President should explain the action. It is possible that staff raised objections to the continuation of Vindman in light of the disobeying of the direction of the President on his testimony after the White House raised constitutional objections. However, the removal of his twin brother undermines such a rationale.

Update: President Trump has defended his action on Vindman with a tweet:

“Actually, I don’t know him, never spoke to him, or met him (I don’t believe!) but, he was very insubordinate, reported contents of my ‘perfect’ calls incorrectly, & was given a horrendous report by his superior, the man he reported to, who publicly stated that Vindman had problems with judgement, adhering to the chain of command and leaking information. In other words, ‘OUT’.”

186 thoughts on “Trump Moves Against Impeachment Witnesses [Updated]”

  1. Probably repeating someone else’s comments but
    1.Sondman was an ambassador to a not to meaningful “entity” (not even a country), the EU. Sondman was a political appointee ambassador. Ambassadors serve at the pleasure of the President, especially political appointee ambassadors (see — for example — Hitler lover Joseph P Kennedy and what FDR did to him in 1940 for saying England would not survive)
    2. Vindman was on TDY at the White House from the Army as a low level functionary, with his 2-year TDY expiring in three months. It was ended earlier since it makes no sense to have a low level functionary that disagrees with national security policy working on the national security policy at the White House (I assume he chose to be marched out by security people because he could have simply been ordered to not show up… I bet that’s what happened and he disobeyed the order… just as he went outside of the chain of command back in July)

    As for the brother, there seems to be no reporting on the fact that he was up to his eyeballs in the attempted colonels coup. Go back and read Vindman’s deposition

      1. N.E.,don’t waste your time on Paul. He’s a dishonest commenter who never sources anything he says – given he usually rips it from his butt, none really required – and if presented the proof he demands, as I gave him on recent exchange, he waffles, weasels and heads for under the house, maybe calling you a liar at the same time.

        Pathetic.

        1. bythebook – you were wrong and you know it, Just own it, I owned a mistake I made and thanked the person who caught it. I have done this before. However, you seem incapable of admitting you are wrong.

          1. OK, for others, here was the argument. Mespo falsely claimed that impeachment witnesses were to be heard in the House, not the Senate, and cited the constitution in support. I argued back that the constitution says no such thing, and that, as a matter of verifiable fact, the Senate has had 15 impeachment hearings, during which all 15 heard witnesses.

            Mespo wisely disappeared. Paul said no, the Clinton hearings did not include witnesses. I corrected him that in fact 3 new taped depositions were taken during the Senate hearing – this is a verifiable fact. He asked who they were taken from. I gave him the names and a source for the information, while also pointing out that in the Clinton hearings, not only had the administration provided thousands of documents and allowed the president to be deposed, but there was no dispute about the facts. It had also been preceded by a couple of years of study by an independent prosecutor. He countered that they were not new witnesses. I said that obviously was not the point as the argument was over the imagined principle that the Senate does not hear witnesses during its impeachment hearings, not the nature of the witnesses. He ended by calling me a liar – he actually began with that accusation – gave fellow bottom feeder Allan the secret handshake, and then disappeared.

            He should stay disappeared as he adds nothing to the discussion and has now revealed himself to be dishonest as well.

            1. bythebook – as I said, there were no new witnesses at the Clinton trial. There were new depositions of three old witnesses. The House managers wanted NEW witnesses never called by the House. That did not happen with Clinton. They were using the Clinton model for this impeachment trial.

              1. Weasal, you came in on an argument between Mespo and myself on his claimed and imagined constitutional principle that the Senate does not hear witnesses in impeachment hearings. I have proven that claim to be not only false but to have been proven by the Senate itself in every impeachment hearing they have conducted until this whitewash by the GOP. You’re imagining another non existent principle never claimed by even the WH during the recent hearings. You might as well claim that only Vernon Jordan can be deposed. You also completely ignore the fact that there was no dispute on the facts of the Clinton hearings and that the administration produced thousands of documents along with the President himself. Do you want to try and prove that other witnesses were requested but denied on this new imagined and ridiculous principle you pulled out of your a.s to avoid admitting you’re full of s..t?

                1. bythebook – first,mespo is correct. Find that part of the Constitution that says the Senate has to have new witnesses. second, your thinking is screwed up and you are a sore loser. You and Joe Biden would work well together.

                  1. Weasel, I did not say the constitution requires the Senate to hear witnesses. I said that nothing in it assigns that procedure to the House and restricts the Senate from hearing them as Mespo, you, and Kurtz imagine.I pointed out that the GOP whitewash performed in foamy before us was the first Senate hearing in our long history to not have witnesses.

                    1. bythebook – you ignorant slut. The Constitution requires the witnesses and documents to be examined in the House. That is impeachment.

                    2. Weasel, cite the article and section and then please explain how the Congress has gotten it wrong until 2020, since every impeachment hearing in the Senate until now featured witnesses.

                    3. bythebook – US Constitution Art i

                      Sec 2 …The House of Representatives shall choose their speaker and other officers; and shall have the sole power of impeachment.

                      Sec 3. …The Senate shall have the sole power to try all impeachments. When sitting for that purpose, they shall be on oath or affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two thirds of the members present.

                      Judgment in cases of impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States: but the party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to indictment, trial, judgment and punishment, according to law.

                      See anything there about witnesses?

                    4. The Constitution is silent on the details of impeachment. It is past hilarious to hear people declaring what the Constitution states when there is nothing there.
                      As for witnesses, the Senate has not called NEW witnesses in a Presidential impeachment trial and they do not have to do so.
                      The outcry for witnesses is puzzling as supposedly the case was airtight. If it was proven beyond any doubt as Jeremiah (bullfrog) Nadler asserts, why the urgency for more witnesses?
                      If all the testimony was so eagerly desired, why did the House manager hold back the transcript of one of the witnesses? That seems to be the real coverup.

                    5. ti317 – Schiff suppressed the testimony of the witness from OMB and the House managers submitted 13 of the 17 others that testified.

                    6. Weasel, what is wrong with you? You stated above :”The Constitution requires the witnesses and documents to be examined in the House. ”

                      I ask you for a cite from the constitution proving your point and you post a section which says nothing about witnesses and then act like you have proven your point.

                      What is wrong with you?

                    7. bythebook – you ignorant slut. I know logic is not your strong suit or even a suit in your hand. However, if the House does the impeachment, by definition, it does the investigation (including witnesses and documents). However, the Constitution is silent on the matter. So, they could do it without witnesses and documentation, which is what they did for Clinton. Ken Starr appeared before them with his report and they voted to impeach. Then, later, in the Senate, three of the witnesses that Ken Starr had interviewed re-testified on tape. And edited tape was shown to the Senate of those previous witnesses and then they voted.

                    8. Bwahahahahaha! 🤣 You’re whining again and it’s glorious. That’s your tell that your loss is America’s gain. We’re certain to be entertained by your whining for years to come.

                    9. ti, no one, including myself has said the constitution requires the senate to hear witnesses, but dumb as.es like Weasel and Mespo claim it says the House is the proper place the. In fact, every Senate impeachment hearing in our history has included witnesses. The pretend constitutional restriction on this is BS by those trying to justify the unprecedented railroad job by the GOP Senators.

                    10. Weasel, note that you have inserted the words investigate and witnesses. They are not in the constitution. By your stupid attempt to avoid the obvious – you don’t know WTF you are talking about – you are saying that all previous Senate impeachment hearings were improper, since they all heard witness testimony not produced by the House. You might notice that the constitution charges the Senate with trying the cases and from watching Perry Mason might remember that he tried cases and interrogated ……..,.witnesses!!

                      I don’t mind going over and over this, given that these are all demonstrations of your weaselness as well as the perfidy of the GOP Senators who were pushing the same BS line.

                    11. ” You might notice that the constitution charges the Senate with trying the cases and from watching Perry Mason might remember that he tried cases and interrogated ……..,.witnesses!!”

                      This Anon character doesn’t realize that an impeachment trial is different than a normal criminal trial. At the same time he has in the past argued against due process.

                    12. btb – you, like Shifty Shift, are trying to read my mind. Sadly, you are wrong. Oddly enough, the Constitution is silent about witnesses in the Senate. The Senate has complete control of how they handle the impeachment that comes from the House, including dismissing outright. Yes, that is right. They can dismiss it outright. Damn, think about that. Who would have thought they could dismiss it outright.

                    13. Paul the Weasel, at 6:13 pm you wrote:

                      “The Constitution requires the witnesses and documents to be examined in the House.”

                      Of course that is false and you were unable to cite anything from the constitution to support it.

                      At 9:50 pm you wrote:

                      “Oddly enough, the Constitution is silent about witnesses in the Senate.”

                      Well yes, just as it is silent about witnesses anywhere in the constitution. Of course over our 200 plus years, the Senate has heard witness testimony not produced by the House in every one of their impeachment hearings until the recent cover up by the GOP majority. Your flailing attempts to climb down from the branch you’ve climbed out on won’t happen until you either admit you’re full of s..t or disappear. Good luck on choosing your path.

            2. “Mespo falsely claimed that impeachment witnesses were to be heard in the House, not the Senate, and cited the constitution in support. I argued back that the constitution says no such thing, and that, as a matter of verifiable fact, the Senate has had 15 impeachment hearings, during which all 15 heard witnesses.”
              ****************
              Another grand lie by the Grand Wizard himself. Amazing you can type with a nose that long. LOL. I said witnesses were called in both but that the Dims rigged the House. Btw I haven’t disappeared. I’m just reeling out your rope.

              1. Mespo, you should stayed disappeared. He responded to my earlier post to Kurtz.

                Mespo wrote on 2/7 at 12:41 am:

                byb:

                “Nothing in the constitution supports your BS about investigations and in no other Senate impeachment hearings in our nation’s history have there been zero witnesses.”
                ******************

                I guess the 13 sworn deposition transcripts complete with directs and crosses accepted into the Senate record aren’t “witnesses” in your unlettered mind. You musta missed that day in your civil procedure class.

                And I suppose Article I, Section 2, Clause 5 providing: The House of Representatives shall choose their Speaker and other Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment, and Article I, Section 3, Clauses 6 and 7 providing: The Senate shall have the sole Power to try all Impeachments means nothing to you. Maybe you need a dictionary.”

                Nothing in Mespo’s completely irrelevant cite says anything about witnesses, which of course, every Senate impeachment hearing until this one included.

                He’s a lawyer?

  2. You did a great job at the impeachment hearings.
    Don’t ruin that by going Romney now. Understand you are not a republican but you showed you are truly an American

  3. Àll of these people are in appointed positions and serve at the pleasure of the president. The Pentagon official who pledged that retaliation against Vindman would be tolerateld, seemed to Not understand that He to serves at the pleasure of Commander in Chief. Yes this is retaliation and it should have been expected, even by the brother who gave giving moral support to one who chose the loosing side.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson said it best
    ““When you strike at a king, you must kill him.”. Trump is not a king, but politics is a blood sport and his enemies failed in their attempt to distroy him.

  4. Those interested in news from Ukraine might wish to follow
    unian news
    which reports in sort-of English, amusing at times.

    Regarding the infamous phone call, whatever actually came from the Ukrainian government, which is quite open, ought have been reported there. But they do copy from other news sources, including those in the USA.

  5. Sondland admitted that he made the quid pro quo allegation up. He said no one told him and he use presumed. That caused quite a bit of chaos.

    The Executive Branch sets foreign policy. Not the NSC. Not any advisor. What has become clear is that there have been an unprecedented level of leaks and moles. The resistance.

    There have been some faces that I was sorry to see go, as I think Trump needed them to anchor. But others have plotted against him, undermined him, and proven unreliable. The activist whistleblower is an example. If he is who has been suggested, he was a Democrat activist whose stated goal was to impeach Trump. He mischaracterized the Ukraine call. They had to change the rules to allow second hand information, and then make it retroactive, for him to even file the complaint. There is no guarantee of anonymity, just freedom from retribution, in the whistleblower law. But Adam Schiff has protected his identity. The whistleblower met with Demcorat presidential candidates and Adam Schiff’s office, and Schiff lied about it.

    These kinds of operatives cannot continue to have access. There is no more loyalty to the job, regardless of who is President.

    Plug the leaks. You can’t function smoothly with coup attempts. Democrats cannot force Trump to retain someone he doesn’t trust if he has the authority to fire or transfer them. They wish they did, because they do so like to spy on him to get dirt for elections.

    1. How do you know there have been no allegations raised about the twin brother? Have there been no reports from his superiors of similar misconduct and leaks as his brother? Did they leak to each other? It would be an interesting episode of NCIS if the brothers switched places for the day so the transferred brother could get access again. Was there a reason to suspect misconduct?

      Turley has mentioned that there have been unprecedented leaks. This is a major threat to security, our dealings with foreign nations, provides opportunities to our enemies abroad, and is a weapon of the soft coup.

      Sometimes, to plug the leaks, you need to do a sweep. If he had the right to fire or transfer these people, then he’d have a strong motivation to do so. I don’t like the churning in staff, but the leaks and activist moles are threats. It is a shame that Trump does not have a reliable, steady team, outside his small inner circle. Too many have used their access to leak or write books. I suspect he does not always accept advice or the traditional chain of command. A part of him seems to thrive on a bit of chaos. The man can change Twitter trending with a single Tweet. That must be frustrating, especially to people like his former Chief of Staff, General Kelly. Their temperaments seemed quite different. I wish he had steady people around him whom he could rely on, and I wish the constant political espionage against him would stop. There has been much that I’ve appreciated about his term as President, and I certainly don’t want any of the Democrat candidates to win. The economy would be in ruins.

      So plug the leaks.

      1. Allegations or no allegations against the twin brother do not matter. He was not discreet. He publicly showed support for his brother as brother aided those trying to distroy THEIR boss. This is Not collateral damage he gave aid and comfort to an enemy of the president and paid the price.

    2. Karen S, the NSC is an arm of the Executive Branch. The Ukrainians were going to announce that they were investigating, the quid pro quo, when the whistle blew and the funds were released. The Ukrainians didn’t treat any of this as secret; I first learned about it in the Ukrainian English-language online press.

      1. If this was in fact covered by “the Ukrainian English-language online press”( prior to the U.S. release of the transcript), I would like to see what they wrote.
        So far, we only have one person’s statement that he saw it there.

      2. David Benson is the God Emperor of Making Stuff Up and owes me forty-three citations (one from the OED, one from the town ordinances and two from the Old Testament), an equation and the source of a quotation, after sixty-two weeks, and needs to cite all his work from now on. – citation necessary, David.

    3. Zombie-like, Karen continues the lie that even GOP Senators have abandoned.

      Sondland did not admit he made anything up. He logically presumed Trumps plan to extort Zelensky based on over 20 calls with Trump, untold discussions with Trumps admitted point man in the Ukraine, Guliani, the freezing of aid, which could have only been ordered by Trump, and words and actions of various OMB and State Dept officials. Karen’s ridiculous interpretation of the known facts would require the belief that multiple administration officials all misunderstood Trumps wishes and his actions which included his freezing of aid and his own words on the phone call. Not only that, but one has to believe Zelensky scheduled an appearance on Gareed Zacharia’s show, and then cancelled as the shakedown became public for some other purpose other than making the public announcement which he quid Trump required of him.

      Karen is well known here for repeating false claims, no matter how many times they are disproven, This one and the VP Biden was protecting Hunter when he was executing US foreign policy is another. Unfortunately for her, her go to source -John Solomon – has been revealed as on the Parnas Guliani team, and not an independent journalist, as was his previous disguise.

      1. bythebook – why won’t Schiff release the transcript from the OMB? What is he hiding? If he is so pure, he should have nothing to hide. Let us see that transcript.

  6. Vindman is a security risk, and because of the close relationship with his twin, so is he. As other commenters have pointed out, NO ONE is supposed to discuss classified information with anyone except one who has “a need to know,” regardless of whether they are cleared or not. The White House was right to fire him. By the way, a “Pentagon official” has no say in the matter. Donald Trump is the commander-in-chief of the military and Vindman works for him and him alone.

          1. That’s what you’re going with? That your comment was regarding the Ukrainian classification? You’re then claiming the Ukrainian’s illegally changed the the classification as a cover up?

            1. AFAIK, the Ukrainians never treated the phone call as secret. Only the USA did that. I believe not right away as I recall reading details of the phone call in the American press.

              1. David, you are always behind the times. Discussions between heads of state are considered priviledged. Both parties might talk to the press about what was discussed but without mutual agreement they don’t release the actual transcript. You recall reading details in the American Press. Both heads of state might talk to the press about what transpired but that doesn’t mean the American Press had copies of the transcript. I recall you making a lot of things up and that is what you are doing.

              2. Come on Benson. You’ve been caught making sh!t up. You made a statement that the conversation wasn’t initially classified and that it was illegally changed as a coverup. When I called you on it, you claimed it was not classified in Ukraine. So logically, you’re now claiming it was Ukraine that did things illegally, not the USA. Or is it that the Ukraine had a lower classification, therefore the USA was trying to cover it up? Your facts are coming from the American press? Damn you are lost.

                It is by policy that the USA classifies those communications as SECRET. They will reclassify as a matter of normal review. Nothing about this process is illegal. And if the Ukraine government doesn’t treat these communications with similar classification controls, they will likely find themselves on the outside looking in as being considered trustworthy.

                Too bad you can’t admit you simply made an error. Instead you’ve doubled-down on an obvious lie by pretending to be an expert on Ukrainian security classifications and blaming US media for your actual ignorance on US policy.

  7. Paul Coleman, you failed to answer my question.

    And I certainly understand enough about the military code and even more than that about the security system. Neither are in the Constitution. Impeachment is.

    Now if you were still a military officer, what would you do?

    1. First, I would not have given sensitive information to anyone, because even if they have a clearance they are required to have a “need to know”. Secondly, he could have, and should have went to his chain of command, and informed them he was going to see the IG. That is perfectly ok, his legal right, and by the way keeps him from looking like he looks right now. Not to mention having an interaction with the President of a Foreign Country “way way out of his league of responsibility”. At that point he potentially went directly against the Presidents foriegn policy on his own accord. LTC Vindmans own leaders have stated on the record that he was involved in things he should have not been involved in. Remember, everything is alleged at this point, but will not stay alleged. It will either be proven or disproven.

      1. Don’t you think that the House committee providing oversight of the NSC has a need-to-know? Who could possibly be IG for an NSC staff appointment?

        Separate issue is why this phone call was considered “top secret”, post-facto. Looks like a cover up and an abuse of the security classification system. Which, by the way, happens far too often.

        1. Please stop trying to put evrything together. What happened before the Impeachment hearings is separate from what happened during them. He related to someone before the House ever called him to be a witness what was said in the Presidents call. Believe me, he knew he was risking his career regardless of what he may claim. As far as the IG he is a Soldier, and has an IG at the Pentagon regardless of his status as an NSC staffer. He knows his limits, and responsibilities to that uniform. He even asked, or corrected a Congressman about calling him by his rank. You guys can keep throwing all this stuff out there for him, but bottom line he knew exactly what he was getting involved in, and potentially could pay accordinly. Not retribution, but as all the ones now trying to give him cover like to laugh, and say “nobody is above the Law”.

          1. Thank you. Possibly an IG at the Pentagon had the proper need-to-know. Do you know that he did not take such counsel?

            I continue to submit that Lt. Col. Vindman was doing his duty to the Constitution, including informing a staffer of the oversight committee in the House.

  8. Why does ANYONE trust these people ?
    It is not like they have a decades long track record of success – in the Ukraine, in Russia, in Syria, Libya, Iraq, Iran, ……

    I do not think Trump is some foreign policy genius.

    But the unelected elites have clearly failed.
    Fire them all and move on.

    If things get worse – in November we can fire Trump.

  9. You might be right that this is a bad strategy.

    But that is still the presidents decision to make – and voters can punish or reward that in November.

    What it is not is “improper”.

    We have to quit this nonsense that ideas that we disagree with – whether on strategy or policy are somehow crimes or misconduct.

    Gen. Flynn was openly fired by the Obama administration over his disagrement with the administration over policy regarding Iran.

    I think Flynn was right and Obama was wrong. But Flynn was NOT president, and the president decides policy, not Flynn.

    Based on the faux legal/constitutional argument that the house and its witnesses made – republicans should have impeached Obama for firing Flynn.

    Complain about Trump’s decisions – I am fine with that. But lets quit pretending they are unusual, or that they are illegal, unconstitutional or improper.

    My question regarding most of these people – is why were they there in the first place ?

    Trump promised to “drain the swamp”. The NSC is bloated and from day one has been working at odds with Trump.

    Trump voters voted for the “You’re Fired” president.
    We have had far far far too little firing.

    Trump needed to clean house BEFORE these people who think they know better were testifying against him – not after.

  10. Reno’s dramatic removal of all Republican US Attorney raised suspicions that the Clinton administration is willing to put politics above enforcing the law

    Nahhhhhhhh! Clinton put politics above the law?

    My kingdom for a troll! Where is a Media Mad Hatters troll when you need them?

    😜

    1. Had Vindman done to Clinton what he did to Trump, he would have been Arkancided

      Arkancide is the unfortunate habit of potential witnesses to the Clintons’ dirty dealings in Arkansas suddenly deciding to shoot themselves twice in the back of the head. Police and Coroners in Arkansas, notably Fahmy Malak who answered to Governor Bill Clinton, automatically described these shootings as “suicides.”

      After Bill Clinton became President the phenomenon spilled over to Washington D.C. when Hillary Clinton’s ex-lover Vincent Foster was “Arkancided.”

      https://www.arkancide.com/

  11. Wally,

    Vindman spoke the truth.

    “The truth never hurt a just cause.”

    Gandhi
    ______

    Are you ——- kidding me?

    No one in their right mind would “speak the truth” about the Clintons.

    Vince Foster, Ron Brown, Joseph Rago, Seth Rich and many others were on the verge of “speaking some truth.”

    Why did no one “speak the truth” about Bill Clinton covering-up the Navy shoot-down of Flight 800 within days of Bill Clinton’s re-election bid? The MSM told America all about the recent accidental shoot-down of a Ukrainian airliner by Iran. Bill Clinton paid Boeing to assess it as a “…a spontaneous fuel tank explosion…” after he sent the CIA in to take the investigation away from the FBI, and quash and cover-up the shootdown and “investigation.”

    No one in their right mind would betray or, otherwise, cross Bill and/or Hillary Clinton.

    Take a little time to review the facts of history. The Clintons are but one communist entity of merciless vengeance.

    “Obongo The Fake’s” handlers carry the same threat as the Clintons.
    ___________________________________________________

    The Clinton Body Count

    http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/RANCHO/POLITICS/BODIES.php

    1. You can play that game with any famous peson if they’ve been around long enough. Trump is no different than Clinton in this regard. Anyone who wanted to believe dumb conspiracy theories could easily put together a list of “suspicious” deaths of people “close” to him.

      Just today, for example, I was reading a New York Times article about Donald Trump’s long relationship with Deutsche Bank. (The article does not allege any criminal behavior, by the way.) At one point, the article noted that one of Trump former contacts there died a couple years ago, apparently having committed suicide.

      And of course, everyone knows that Trump’s friend Jeffrey Epstein apparently killed himself last year in a prison that is ultimately under Trump’s control.

  12. ‘Vindman’s removal is legal, and extremely appropriate. Vindman’s conduct was highly unprofessional and inappropriate. As a military matter, Vindman deserves to be charged in violation of several portions of the UCMJ. Everyone pretending this isn’t the case is ignoring reality.’ @J_Wade_Miller

  13. Timing is never appropriate when it comes to President Trump’s actions. The demonization of this president continues no matter what or when he takes action. Why should he have individuals in the White House who have shown their bias against him? I’d prefer they actually get “fired” rather than reassigned.
    It’s frustrating that our tax dollars are used to pay these deceitful individuals who aren’t talented or ethical enough to go work in the private sector and learn what it is to work. Or better yet, run for President themselves rather than work behind the scenes to sabotage this President.
    Loyalty matters.

    1. Barbara Carrasco, military officers take an oath of office to defend the constitution, not engage in personal loyalty.

      1. David, you should probably read the whole oath they take. I served for 26 years, so believe me I know a little bit about this, and yes his has a loyalty requirement. Don’t mistake civilian law for the legal system in the Military. Unless they can claim an unlawful order they must comply with the order, or potentially be submitted for Courts Martial. In his own testimony he admitedly said that he did not believe the President had done anything wrong, nor was it his job to decide if the President was wrong. He was potentially very close to commiting treason in my opinion because of all his very close dealings with those foreign leaders. He involved himself in decisions way above his level of inclusion.

        1. Treason is defined in the Constitution and is not now possible as there is no State of War.

          Article I of the Constitution gives the House of Representatives the solitary right to assess matters of impeachment. If the House of Representatives calls, you are compelled to testify, to fulfill your oath of office, yes?

          1. What did LTC Vindman do before he was called by the House. Hmmmm, believe me their is more that went on than you know. When you receive a security clearance you sign a form that prevents you from providing sensitive info to others. Their is no provisions for “oh I did not realize I was breaking the law”. Wait a few months, and you will understand what he potentially was involved in. Again, the Military legal system is not the same as civilian law. It is called the Uniform Code of Military Justice, and their is an article 32 that is basically a catch all for anything not specifically covered in the other articles.

            1. Vindman was born in a communist country, came to America at age 3 with his father, twin brother and an older brother when their mother died. Like me, a refugee from a communist country, Vindman is lucky to be in America. He forgot that salient fact

              He served in US embassies in Kiev and Moscow circa 2008 and returned to DC to join the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 2015 under Obama. He knew all too well what Obama failed to do to provide assistance to his people.

              Obama turned his back on the people of Ukraine. Obama did nothing to Russia when they annexed Crimea in 2014 with an embarrassing, impotent political response to a country that now all Democrats characterize as a global world threat.

              Vindman’s silence on Obama’s response to his people, nay, support of Obama‘s presidency, speaks volumes. Yet he had hubris in undermining a US election and President by being a tool for the Dems coup d’etat in spite of the fact President Trump provided lethal aid to Ukraine, unlike Obama. His enabling of Pelosi’s coup d’etat merits far more than what Trump did to him, long overdue. Deport the lard ass and preferably to Crimea. Pelosi, Schiff and Nadler will surely forget he even existed.

              The fact that Russia felt it had to go in militarily and lay bare these violations of international law indicates less influence, not more

              Barack Obama
              G7 meeting in 2014

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