He testified before the House impeachment panel that Trump inappropriately pushed Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden.
'When we stand up for the rule of law - in a world that hungers for more rule of law - and say 'this decision is fundamental, and we have rules that we are going to follow so we can make a good decision, ' that's a message of strength, " Kaine said Wednesday. "LTC Vindman told the truth under oath".
President Trump's former chief of staff John Kelly said late Wednesday the National Security Council staffer ousted from the White House was just doing his job when he raised concerns about the president's July phone call with the Ukrainian president.
He reported his concerns to others.
Republican Senators Rand Paul and Mike Lee said the briefing on Trump's engagement with Iran following the drone attack on Soleimani was among the worst they had been given during their time in the U.S. Senate.
President Donald Trump said Thursday he may end the practice of letting others listen in to his phone calls with foreign leaders. "The only one that ran was this one", he said, referring to Vindman.
Trump has also moved to shield his associate Roger Stone, demanding a lighter sentence for him than that proposed by the USA attorneys who prosecuted him and secured his conviction for lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Congress and witness tampering. "It's a little bit of a different feeling than I get from looking at the other portraits of presidents", he said.
Kelly said when Vindman heard Trump discussing an investigation, it was the same as hearing an "illegal order". The spate of actions he's taken in the last week alone underscores the fresh sense of empowerment he feels after the Senate cleared him of abusing the power of his office - and has critics anxious he is dismantling the firewalls put up after President Richard Nixon's abuses of power. "And if you're ever given one, you'll raise it to whoever gives it to you that this is an illegal order, and then tell your boss'".
He denounced Russian President Vladimir Putin (whom Trump has praised), characterized the president's peace negotiations with North Korea as "futile" and said the media is "the enemy of the people" (a frequent claim of his former boss).
"When we took him out of the building, many people in the building applauded".
Vindman was removed from the White House on February 7. "'This is not normal and it is not right, and it is unsafe territory for the rule of law, '" he said citing a Washington Post editorial from former federal prosecutor Chuck Rosenberg. "At the end of the day, the president is entitled to staffers that want to execute his policy, that he has confidence in, and I think every president's entitled to that".
Following his time in the Trump White House, Kelly joined the board of Caliburn International, the parent company of Comprehensive Health Services, which operates shelters for unaccompanied migrant children. "First of all, that's very insubordinate".
Only two House Democrats, including New Jersey Rep. Jeff Van Drew, opposed both counts of impeachment, and only one Senate Republican, Mitt Romney of Utah, voted to convict Trump.