Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) went after Schiff on Twitter for “hailing Alexander Vindman as an American patriot” during his testimony.
“How patriotic is it to badmouth and ridicule our great nation in front of Russia, America’s greatest enemy?” Blackburn tweeted — a baseless accusation spread as part of a smear campaign against Vindman.
In a second tweet, she continued her degradation of Vindman, calling him vindictive over her allegation that he leaked the contents of the July 25 call to the intelligence agency whistleblower.
Vindman’s attorney, David Pressman, released a statement condemning Blackburn’s tweets.
“That a member of the Senate — at a moment when the Senate is undertaking its most solemn responsibility — would choose to take to Twitter to spread slander about a member of the military is a testament to cowardice,” Pressman said.
This isn’t the first time Blackburn has questioned Vindman’s loyalty to the United States. After he testified in the House impeachment probe in November, she derisively called him the whisleblower’s “handler.”
Vindman, who is Soviet-born and serves as director of European Affairs at the White House National Security Council, received a Purple Heart after he was injured from an IED during the Iraq War.
Blackburn, who was seen reading a book during the proceedings this morning, was roundly criticized on Twitter for going after Vindman.
Former U.S. ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul challenged Blackburn to provide evidence to back up her claim. “Otherwise, stop slandering a US soldier serving our great nation,” he tweeted.
Tim Miller, former spokesman for Jeb Bush’s 2016 presidential campaign and frequent Trump critic, tweeted:
“1. The president you’re running interference for ridiculed our military intelligence officers & groveled before Putin in front of the world.
2. Vindman has shrapnel in his body from an IED attack he suffered fighting for our country.
It’s reprehensible how low you have gone.”