As if naming Greta Thunberg 2019’s ‘Person of the Year’ wasn’t evidence enough of their left-wing bias, Time Magazine has also awarded several Democrat impeachment hearing witnesses as ‘Guardians of the Year.’
According to Time, “For each, the decision to step forward came at a cost. None expected to become household names or to find their faces on televisions across the country night after night. And though each followed the rules and used the proper channels, some have found themselves vilified online, their decades of government service impugned and their background questioned. Several have been assailed publicly by the President.”
Ambassadors to the Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch and Bill Taylor, along with Fiona Hill and Lt. Colonel Vindman are featured on the cover of their graphic for this award:
John McNally corrected the award's name for Time Magazine on Twitter:
Here's what Time Magazinehad to say on their feature page for the 'Guardians of the Year':
As he fights back against impeachment, Trump is testing that principle, collapsing the space for dissent. Arguing that Congress is abusing its authority, Trump loyalists have continued their efforts to block the airing of public servants’ concerns. Recasting the balance of power that has existed between Congress and the White House since Watergate, Trump ordered all Executive Branch employees not to testify in the impeachment inquiry. For more than two months, he has attacked the public servants as “traitors” and “human scum.” At the U.S. Mission to the United Nations, he suggested the proper response to the whistle-blower’s complaint was the punishment historically reserved for “spies” and for “treason”: the death penalty.
The public servants came forward to tell their stories anyway. In Kyiv, the 33-year veteran diplomat Marie Yovanovitch, known as Masha, was one of the first to see Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, advancing what she would later conclude was a personal political mission for the President. After she was yanked from the job, her successor, Ambassador William Taylor, a Vietnam veteran with 50 years’ experience in government, questioned the efforts to pressure Ukraine to dig up dirt on Trump’s potential opponent in the 2020 election, former Vice President Joe Biden. At the White House, Trump’s top Russia expert, Fiona Hill, uncovered and then reported what she later realized was a “domestic political errand.” Hill’s Ukraine expert on the National Security Council (NSC), Lieut. Colonel Alexander Vindman, witnessed the July 25 call and raised alarms. In the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the fiscal boiler room of the federal government, 15-year senior civil servant Mark Sandy struggled to reconcile Congress’ lawful provision of military aid to Ukraine with Trump’s orders to withhold it, and raised legal concerns with his superior.
For each, the decision to step forward came at a cost. None expected to become household names or to find their faces on televisions across the country night after night. And though each followed the rules and used the proper channels, some have found themselves vilified online, their decades of government service impugned and their background questioned. Several have been assailed publicly by the President.
Business Insider has more to say on Time choosing Democrat impeachment witnesses as 'Guardians of the Year' for 2019:
Among the people named were:
- The whistleblower who first sounded the alarm on Trump's efforts to strongarm Ukraine into delivering political dirt on a rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, in exchange for vital military aid and a White House meeting.
- Marie Yovanovitch, the US's ambassador to Ukraine who was forced out of her position for refusing to go along with Trump's and his lawyer Rudy Giuliani's scheme.
- Bill Taylor, the career diplomat who replaced Yovanovitch and testified about the extent of the quid pro quo Trump and Giuliani were engaged in.
- Fiona Hill, the National Security Council's former senior director for Russian and Eurasian affairs, who witnessed and reported what she described as the "domestic political errand" that had hijacked US foreign policy.
- Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the NSC's top Ukraine expert, who witnessed the July 25 phone call at the center of the impeachment inquiry and reported his concerns up the chain of command.
- David Holmes, a member of Taylor's staff who overheard a July 26 phone call between Trump and Gordon Sondland, the US's ambassador to the European Union, directly discussing Trump's effort to dig up political dirt on Biden.
- Mark Sandy, an official at the Office of Management and Budget who struggled to understand why Trump withheld military aid after Congress approved it, and who raised concerns about it to his superior.
Yovanovitch, Taylor, Hill, and Vindman are featured on Time's cover.
The majority of concerns these officials raised were buried by political forces higher up in the hierarchy. Still, when Congress called on them to testify — with the exception of the whistleblower, who has remained anonymous amid concerns for their safety — they stepped forward to break their silence in direct defiance of the White House's orders.
"For each, the decision to step forward came at a cost," Time said, adding: "And though each followed the rules and used the proper channels, some have found themselves vilified online, their decades of government service impugned and their background questioned. Several have been assailed publicly by the President."
Vindman in particular was singled out for his background as an immigrant. The Purple Heart recipient, whose family fled the Soviet Union when he was a toddler, found himself the target of attacks from Trump's conservative allies who suggested that because Vindman was an immigrant he was disloyal to the US.
Yovanovitch, meanwhile, was attacked by Trump while she was in the middle of testifying. After Yovanovitch told lawmakers that she felt threatened by Trump's comments about her in his July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, the president used Twitter to smear Yovanovitch's decades of foreign service, an action she described as "very intimidating."
Trump has slammed others who testified against him, like Taylor, Sandy, and Hill, as "never Trumpers" and "radical unelected bureaucrats," characterizations they have all disputed while stressing that they were not there to advocate any particular outcome but to be fact witnesses.