Trump ousts Alexander Vindman, aide who testified in impeachment

Trump ousts Alexander Vindman, aide who testified in impeachment


WASHINGTON –  President Donald Trump fired two high-profile impeachment witnesses on Friday – a national security adviser and a prominent ambassador – in what appeared to be a campaign of retribution for their damning testimony to House impeachment investigators.

Trump first ousted Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, a Ukraine expert, from the National Security Council, and just hours later, yanked Gordon Sondland, his ambassador to the European Union, from his post in Brussels.

“I was advised today that the president intends to recall me effective immediately as United States Ambassador to the European Union,” Sondland said in a statement Friday evening. “I am grateful to President Trump for having given me the opportunity to serve.”

Vindman’s lawyer, David Pressman, said his client’s removal smacked of payback.

“(Lt. Col.) Vindman was asked to leave for telling the truth. His honor, his commitment to right, frightened the powerful,” Vindman’s attorney, David Pressman, said. “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.” 

White House officials declined to comment on the firings.

“We do not comment on personnel matters,” NSC spokesman John Ullyot said. 


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