The Union of U.S. diplomat representatives has raised money amounting to tens of thousands of dollars to pay for the legal costs of the testimonies of foreign service officers in the impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump.
The American Foreign Service Association (AFSA) issued a statement in defense of the U.S. diplomats against Trump’s criticism of their appearance in Congress. Meanwhile, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo hasn’t released any statement of support.
“These patriots go abroad to every corner of the world and serve the interests of the American people,” said Eric Rubin, AFSA president. “They do so with integrity and have no partisan or hidden agenda. We should honor the service of each and every one of them.”
In a separate statement, Rubin said on the union’s Legal Defense Fund to help pay the lawyers: “We have raised tens of thousands of dollars in the past week alone.”
Previously, a State Department spokesperson said the agency was planning to give legal assistance to employees who were going to testify. Neither the State Department nor the White House has given any comments about it.
On Sunday, Trump lashed out on U.S. diplomat Jennifer Williams after testifying that Trump’s comments on the July 25 phone call with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky were “inappropriate.”
The July 25 phone call is the center of query on whether Trump misused foreign policy extended to Ukraine in return of an investigation on former Vice President Joe Biden, Trump’s potential rival in the 2020 election.
On Twitter, Trump said that Williams was a “Never Trumper”, adding that she had to “work out a better presidential attack.”
Trump has denied all of the allegations and accused the probe of intentionally hurting his 2020 election chances, branding it as a ‘witch hunt.’
Pompeo was asked about why he had not shown support for his employees and answered that he was willing to talk about the foreign policy to Ukraine but not the impeachment probe.
When he was pressed further about it, he said: “I always defend the State Department employees. It’s the greatest diplomatic corps in the history of the world. Very proud of the team.”