Trump Admits He Fired Impeachment Witness Alexander Vindman for Being “Insubordinate”

Ugly stuff.

J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

One day after removing Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman from the White House, President Donald Trump effectively admitted that he fired Vindman for his “insubordinate” testimony during the House’s impeachment inquiry.

Trump went on to attack Vindman, who testified under a subpoena, for reporting the contents of the president’s “perfect” calls related to Ukraine. The president blocked security assistance to Ukraine as part of a failed effort to prove a conspiracy theory that he hoped would hurt former Vice President Joe Biden, a potential opponent in the 2020 elections. Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives for the abuse of power then acquitted by the Senate on Wednesday.

On Friday, Vindman was escorted out of the White House, where he worked on the National Security Council, by security staff. His lawyer David Pressman 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.”

“Vindman was asked to leave for telling the truth,” Pressman continued. “His honor, his commitment to right, frightened the powerful.” 

Trump also pushed out Vindman’s brother, Lt. Col. Yevgeny Vindman, a lawyer on the National Security Council who was not involved with the impeachment inquiry. 

To round out the retributions, the president recalled Gordon Sondland, another key witness in the impeachment inquiry, as his ambassador to the European Union.

Trump has not yet tweeted about Sondland.  

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate