Former U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy faced blowback from liberals and conservatives after he questioned the allegiance of a decorated lieutenant colonel who testified he had concerns over President Trump’s call with the Ukrainian president.
During an appearance on CNN Tuesday, the former GOP Congressman from the 7th noted that Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman was originally from Ukraine, which he left when he was 3. He was awarded the Purple Heart after he was wounded while serving in Iraq and joined the National Security Council in 2018, rising to the body’s top Ukraine expert.
The former congressman said Vindman seemed “incredibly concerned about Ukrainian defense. I don’t know that he’s concerned about American policy.” Duffy, a paid contributor to the network, added Vindman “has an affinity, I think, for the Ukraine,” is from there and speaks the language.
Duffy and other conservative commentators focused on Vindman’s connection to Ukraine as he delivered what’s viewed as damaging testimony to the president’s claims there was no quid pro quo in his dealings with the nation’s president.
U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., told reporters Tuesday it would be “shameful” to question Vindman’s loyalty or patriotism.
“We need to show that we are better than that as a nation,” said Cheney.
Meanwhile, #FireSeanDuffy was trending nationally on Twitter not long after his comments.
Duffy sent a follow-up tweet Tuesday morning, “Lt. Col. Vindman is an American war hero. As I said clearly this morning on air ‘I salute Mr. Vindman’s service.’ My point is that Mr. Vindman is an unelected advisor, he gives ADVICE. President Trump sets the policy.”
Lt. Col. Vindman is an American war hero. As I said clearly this morning on air “I salute Mr. Vindman’s service.” My point is that Mr. Vindman is an unelected advisor, he gives ADVICE. President Trump sets the policy.
— Sean Duffy (@Duffy4Wisconsin) October 29, 2019