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A former U.S. Army officer and veteran responsible for then-President Donald Trump’s first impeachment has announced he is running for Congress in Virginia as a Democrat.
Yevgeny “Eugene” Vindman “plans to announce that he will run for Congress in Virginia’s 7th District, where Rep. Abigail Spanberger (D) has declined to seek another term to run for governor instead,” The Washington Post reported late last week.
He and his twin brother, Alexander, accused Trump of a “quid pro quo” arrangement in which the then-president planned to withhold U.S. military aid from Ukraine unless President Volodymyr Zelenskyy agreed to authorize a criminal inquiry into Joe and Hunter Biden.
“Vindman, 48, is the first Democrat to announce a campaign to succeed Spanberger, whose decision to seek statewide office opens up a competitive seat in the Washington exurbs that is likely to be eyed by Republicans as a pickup opportunity — and by some state and local Democrats as a chance to move to Congress,” The Post noted further, adding that the news site Semafor was the first to report Vindman’s candidacy.
“I’m not your typical candidate,” Vindman said in an interview ahead of his announcement. “I’ve retired from the Army, but now I have a change of mission — and that’s to serve the community I decided to live in and raise my kids in.”
The Post added:
Vindman emerged into the national spotlight when he reported a claim from his colleague and twin brother, Alexander, about a call in which Trump implored Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to open a corruption investigation of Joe Biden.
As a senior ethics official at the National Security Council, Yevgeny Vindman brought the report to his superiors. Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman was later subpoenaed and then testified before a House panel during the first impeachment inquiry into Trump. The identical twins were dismissed together from their NSC jobs following the inquiry.
Then-Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman was the key witness against Trump in his first impeachment trial. Later, he made headlines when he called on then-Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Mark Milley to resign in Sept. 2021 after a the publication of a book co-authored by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa alleged that the four-star Army general reached out to his Chinese counterpart to assure him that he would warn him if Trump initiated a strike against China in the chaotic days following the 2020 election.
“If this is true GEN Milley must resign. He usurped civilian authority, broke Chain of Command, and violated the sacrosanct principle of civilian control over the military. It’s an extremely dangerous precedent. You can’t simply walk away from that,” Vindman said on Twitter.
Meanwhile, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) penned a letter to President Joe Biden calling on him to fire Milley if the allegations were true.
“I write with grave concern regarding recent reporting that General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, worked to actively undermine the sitting Commander in Chief of the United States Armed Forces and contemplated a treasonous leak of classified information to the Chinese Communist Party in advance of a potential armed conflict with the People’s Republic of China (PRC),” Rubio wrote. “These actions by General Milley demonstrate a clear lack of sound judgment, and I urge you to dismiss him immediately.”
“General Milley has attempted to rationalize his reckless behavior by arguing that what he perceived as the military’s judgment as more stable than its civilian commander,” the senator said. “It is a dangerous precedent that could be asserted at any point in the future by General Milley or others. It threatens to tear apart our nation’s longstanding principle of civilian control of the military.”