GOP lawmaker hits Trump after news of Mattis resignation: ‘That’s what happens when you ignore sound military advice’

Rep. Adam KinzingerAdam Daniel KinzingerDemocratic leaders racing toward Monday infrastructure vote House GOP to whip against bipartisan infrastructure bill WHIP LIST: How House Democrats say they'll vote on infrastructure bill MORE (R-Ill.), an Air Force veteran, ripped President TrumpDonald TrumpUkraine's president compares UN to 'a retired superhero' Collins to endorse LePage in Maine governor comeback bid Heller won't say if Biden won election MORE for Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisFormer Defense Secretary Mattis testifies in Theranos CEO trial 20 years after 9/11, we've logged successes but the fight continues Defense & National Security — The mental scars of Afghanistan MORE's announcement he will resign in February due to disagreements with the president.

“That’s what happens when you ignore sound military advice,” Kinzinger tweeted.

Trump and Mattis were known to disagree on a multitude of issues, including Trump’s stances toward NATO and Russia, banning transgender troops from serving in the military, canceling joint U.S.-South Korea military exercises, withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal and deploying troops to the U.S.-Mexico border. 

ADVERTISEMENT

The defense secretary acknowledged the disagreements in his letter, saying his views did not match the those of the commander in chief.

“Because you have the right to have a Secretary of Defense whose views are better aligned with yours on these and other subjects, I believe it is right for me to step down from my position,” Mattis wrote in a resignation letter devoid of any praise for Trump.

Mattis's departure has long been expected after accounts of disagreements with Trump became more widespread and the president suggested a staff shakeup was imminent following November’s midterm elections. 

However, in his tweets announcing the departure, Trump heaped praise on Mattis.

“During Jim’s tenure, tremendous progress has been made, especially with respect to the purchase of new fighting equipment. General Mattis was a great help to me in getting allies and other countries to pay their share of military obligations. A new Secretary of Defense will be named shortly. I greatly thank Jim for his service!” he said.