Senate Democratic Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has requested that Lt. Col. Vindman be protected from Trump retaliation with whistleblower status.
Schumer wrote to Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy and Chief of Staff of the Army General James C. McConville:
Since LTC Vindman’s testimony was announced and especially in the past 24 hours, he has been vilified by individuals in the media and elsewhere. Although he has served our country for more than 20 years and is a recipient of the Purple Heart after being injured while serving in Iraq, he has been called a variety of derogatory terms and some have even gone so far as to call him a spy and question his loyalty to the United States.
These attacks are outrageous and unacceptable, but more importantly, this vitriol toward LTC Vindman may result in professional reprisals and threats to his personal safety and that of his family.
LTC Vindman and whistleblowers like him are standing up for the Constitution they swore an oath to defend. He is a patriot for being willing to do what we hope and expect every service member will do: to tell the truth when asked. It is incumbent on the Army to ensure that he is afforded the same protections as whistleblowers and protected from reprisal for testifying before Congress.
I therefore ask that you provide me with a briefing on what actions the Army is taking to ensure that LTC Vindman and whistleblowers like him are afforded appropriate protections – both from retaliation and for personal safety of him and his family. Further, I urge you to issue public statements indicating your support for him and others in the U.S. Armed Forces who fulfill their duty to tell the truth when asked to do so.
Video of Schumer mentioning his request on the Senate floor:
Sen. Chuck Schumer wants whistleblower status for Alexander Vindman and other Ukraine witnesses who are still in the government. pic.twitter.com/02OYHncBYt
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) October 30, 2019
Trump has a long and proven track record of intimidating and retaliating against witnesses. It is common sense that any witness who is still working in the federal government needs whistleblower protection. If Trump and his flying monkeys will attack a war hero witness, they will attack anyone.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association