It’s week No. 2 in public hearings on the House impeachment inquiry, and the public gets to hear from witnesses who were listening to President Donald Trump’s July 25 phone call to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.
Testifying Tuesday morning were Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the National Security Council’s Ukraine expert, and Jennifer Williams, a national security aide to Vice President Mike Pence. Both witnesses — called to testify by Democrats — expressed serious concerns with the phone call, and Trump attacked each as partisan “Never Trumpers.”
They were followed by the Republican’s pick for witnesses – Kurt Volker, Trump’s former U.S. envoy to Ukraine, and Tim Morrison, the outgoing National Security Council official focused on Russia and Europe issues.
Vindman took a patriotic swipe at Trump, says in America ‘right matters’
Wearing his Army dress uniform, Vindman thanked his father for having the courage to flee the Soviet Union some 40 years ago to give his young sons a better life. He also said that he joined the U.S. military to repay the country that took him in. Now a top Ukrainian expert at the White House, Vindman said he was grateful that he could speak up without being fearful for his family.
In Russia, “offering public testimony involving the president would surely cost my life,” he told Congress in his opening statement.
Then, Vindman directed his comments to his father: “Dad, I’m sitting here today in the U.S. Capitol, talking to our elected professionals. Talking to our elected professionals is proof that you made the right decision 40 years ago to leave the Soviet Union and come here to the United States of America in search of a better life for our family.”
“Do not worry,” he added. “I will be fine for telling the truth.”