House Republican Conference Chair Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) spoke out against conservatives who spent the morning attacking the character of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman.
Supporters of President Donald Trump took to the airwaves Monday night and Tuesday morning to assail Vindman’s character and question his motives after The New York Times reported that he filed multiple internal complaints related to Trump’s decision to withhold military aid from Ukraine.
Cheney took time to express her disappointment with those attacks on Vindman, who is a Purple Heart recipient, during the weekly Republican House leadership press conference:
“I also want to say a word about something else that has been going on over the course of the last several hours and last night, which I think is also shameful. And that is questioning the patriotism, questioning the dedication to country of people like Mr. Vindman. Lt. Col. Vindman.”
Watch her comments below:
Vindman, who was born in Ukraine, became the first White House official to testify in the impeachment inquiry, drawing the ire of supporters of the president.
Former Wisconsin Rep. Sean Duffy appeared to suggest on CNN that Vindman was putting Ukraine’s interests before the interests of America, as IJR has previously reported. Others accused Vindman of “espionage.”
Duffy defended his statement telling Mediaite that he wasn’t trying to attack Vindman’s service record, “If you listen to the segment, I wasn’t trying to undermine his service or his war hero status, what I was trying to say is, he gives advice, the president sets the policy and he can disagree with the president especially on Ukraine.”
Trump lashed out at Vindman in a tweet, calling him “today’s Never Trumper” and questioning whether he even heard the Trump’s call with the Ukranian president, saying “please ask him to read the transcript.”
Cheney urged her colleagues and supporters of Trump “to show that we are better than that as a nation”:
“I think that we need to show that we are better than that as a nation. Their patriotism, their love of country, we’re talking about decorated veterans who have served this nation, who have put their lives on the line and it is shameful to question their patriotism and their love of this nation. We should not be involved in that process.”
In his opening statement to lawmakers, which was released to the public Monday night, Vindman said he felt it was his duty to file a complaint about Trump’s pressure on Ukrainian officials.