NBC Looks to Key Impeachment ‘Never Trumper’ to Sway Viewers


Praising him as the “key witness in the impeachment of President Trump last year” during Monday’s NBC Nightly News, anchor Lester Holt flaunted his exclusive interview with admitted “Never Trumper,” and now-retired Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman. And the admitted point of the interview, according to Vindman, was to “persuade [people] to choose an alternative to what we have, an alternative to four more years of disaster.”

As the video portion of the segment began, Holt’s voiceover again lauded his subject as the “star witness for House Democrats in their impeachment hearings.” And without any sort of serious rebuttal, Holt gave Vindman the floor to re-litigate the impeachment of President Trump (Click “expand”):

HOLT: It all stemmed from that July 2019 phone call. Vindman was listening in to the conversation between President Trump and Ukraine’s President, in which Mr. Trump asked Ukraine to investigate the business dealings of Joe Biden’s son Hunter.

Inappropriate?

VINDMAN: Absolutely.

HOLT: Illegal?

VINDMAN: I suspected it was illegal. But what I knew immediately is that it was wrong and my duty was to report it.

“Vindman says he told the NSC’s legal counsel and others but says he does not know for sure who filed the whistleblower complaint,” Holt added.

Pretending not to know who the whistleblower was at this point was an exercise in gaslighting the American people. NBC and every major news organization was well aware that CIA analyst Eric Ciaramella was the alleged whistleblower. In fact, those news organizations did everything they could to hide his name, but ultimately failed.

 

 

Though he claimed he wasn’t one prior to the impeachment hearing, Vindman opened up to Holt and admitted to being a “Never Trumper.” Even stranger, Holt was the one who prompted him to admit it (Click “expand”):

HOLT: The President suggested you are a Never Trumper. Are you a Never Trumper?

VINDMAN: I could say that I am now a Never Trumper. I was not a Never Trumper before. I was nonpartisan. Regardless of what administration, I would just try to do what I could to advance the national security interest. But I think as the President attacked and politicized me directly, in taking a very sober view of where this President is taking this country, the divisions, the catering to our adversaries, the undermining of national security interests, that I am absolutely a Never Trumper.

HOLT: This interview will elicit strong reaction. Some will call you bitter. Are you bitter?

VINDMAN: I don’t think so.

HOLT: Are you angry?

VINDMAN: I don’t think so. I hope I don’t come across that way

This was a move that definitely damaged any kind of credibility NBC hoped to use.

And in another blow to their credibility, Vindman (again prompted by Holt) claimed, WITHOUT EVIDENCE, that the President was the reason he was forced to retire. He even said the only way he would have been able to stay in the Army would be if Democratic nominee Joe Biden was to win. “But that’s a huge if,” he lamented.

Speaking about what they hoped to gain from the interview, Vindman admitted that the point of speaking with Holt was to sway NBC viewers to vote against Trump:

What I analyze to be a significant amount of personal risk, reputational risk to come out here and to talk to you with one hope in mind. And that hope is to share a perspective that could somehow inform an electorate going to the most important election of our lifetime and maybe persuade them to choose an alternative to what we have, an alternative to four more years of disaster.

Despite everything, Alexander Vindman tells me testifying before Congress and, as he put it, fulfilling his oath to defend the Constitution might be among his proudest moments,” Holt boasted to close out the segment.

Holt’s politically charged interview with Vindman was made possible because of lucrative sponsorships from Liberty Mutual and Wayfair. Their contact information is linked so you can tell them about the biased news they’re funding.

The transcript is below, click “expand” to read:

NBC Nightly News
September 14, 2020
7:11:07 p.m. Eastern

LESTER HOLT: Now to an NBC News exclusive. The high-ranking Army officer and National Security Council staffer, who became a key witness in the impeachment of President Trump last year, is speaking out tonight. Alexander Vindman explaining to me why he called out the President’s actions and the retaliation that he says derailed his career.

[Cuts to video]

HOLT: He was a star witness for House Democrats in their impeachment hearings.

ALEXANDER VINDMAN: I was concerned by the call. What I heard was inappropriate.

HOLT: And tonight, now-retired Lieutenant Cornel Alexander Vindman, says that’s why he and his twin brother were later removed from staff positions on the National Security Council.

You have no doubt that it was the President that ordered your dismissal from the White House?

VINDMAN: I have no doubt.

HOLT: The decorated Iraq war veteran then chose to leave the military altogether after two decades.

Were you forced out of the Army?

VINDMAN: Nobody told me that I had to — that I had to leave. As a matter of fact, if the President were not to be re-elected, for instance, I probably could have continued on. But that’s a huge if. If he were to be re-elected, the joke I’d end up in a radar station in Alaska.

HOLT: It all stemmed from that July 2019 phone call. Vindman was listening in to the conversation between President Trump and Ukraine’s President, in which Mr. Trump asked Ukraine to investigate the business dealings of Joe Biden’s son Hunter.

Inappropriate?

VINDMAN: Absolutely.

HOLT: Illegal?

VINDMAN: I suspected it was illegal. But what I knew immediately is that it was wrong and my duty was to report it.

HOLT: Vindman says he told the NSC’s legal counsel and others but says he does not know for sure who filed the whistleblower complaint.

VINDMAN: I know who I spoke to, but do I know that that was the person that then made the complaint? I do not.

HOLT: At the time that you were in the hearings, did you think that impeachment was appropriate in that case?

VINDMAN: My role is not to decide whether the president should be impeached or not. I suspected that this was an impeachable offense. I absolutely suspected it. I suspected it as soon as I heard the call that if this became public that the president would be impeached no doubt about it.

HOLT: The President was acquitted by the senate, and the White House has said there was nothing wrong with the phone call.

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: I call it a perfect call. I always will call it a perfect call. [Transition] And he reported it totally differently.

HOLT: The President suggested you are a Never Trumper. Are you a Never Trumper?

VINDMAN: I could say that I am now a Never Trumper. I was not a Never Trumper before. I was nonpartisan. Regardless of what administration, I would just try to do what I could to advance the national security interest. But I think as the President attacked and politicized me directly, in taking a very sober view of where this President is taking this country, the divisions, the catering to our adversaries, the undermining of national security interests, that I am absolutely a Never Trumper.

HOLT: This interview will elicit strong reaction. Some will call you bitter. Are you bitter?

VINDMAN: I don’t think so.

HOLT: Are you angry?

VINDMAN: I don’t think so. I hope I don’t come across that way. I have assumed a — what I analyze to be a significant amount of personal risk, reputational risk to come out here and to talk to you with one hope in mind. And that hope is to share a perspective that could somehow inform an electorate going to the most important election of our lifetime and maybe persuade them to choose an alternative to what we have, an alternative to four more years of disaster.

[Cuts back to live]

HOLT: Despite everything, Alexander Vindman tells me testifying before Congress and, as he put it, fulfilling his oath to defend the Constitution might be among his proudest moments.



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