Romney: Vindman attacks 'absurd, disgusting'

Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyJon Huntsman expected to run for governor in Utah Trump Jr's 'Triggered' debuts at No. 1 on NY Times bestseller list Club for Growth extends advertising against House Dems over impeachment MORE (R-Utah) hit back on Tuesday against attacks on an Army officer and key White House official testifying as part of the House impeachment inquiry.

“It’s absurd, disgusting, and way off the mark. This is a decorated American soldier and he should be given the respect that his service to our country demands,” Romney told reporters when asked about criticism of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, a National Security Council official.

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Trump railed against Vindman on Tuesday and questioned his credibility, including calling him a "Never Trumper witness."

"Supposedly, according to the Corrupt Media, the Ukraine call 'concerned' today’s Never Trumper witness," Trump tweeted. "Was he on the same call that I was? Can’t be possible! Please ask him to read the Transcript of the call. Witch Hunt!"

Vindman is testifying behind closed doors as part of the House impeachment inquiry on Tuesday. He's expected to tell the three committees that he raised concerns more than once about Trump and other officials pressing Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to launch two politically motivated investigations that would benefit Trump, according to a copy of his opening remarks.

Vindman arrived in the U.S. as a refugee from Ukraine, then part of the Soviet Union, at the age of 3 and received the Purple Heart for his service in Iraq.

He's the latest witness in a series of near-daily closed-door depositions with current and former officials as the House looks into Trump asking Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenGOP senators balk at lengthy impeachment trial 2020 Democrats make play for veterans' votes 2020 Dems put focus on stemming veteran suicides MORE and his son Hunter Biden, as well as whether Trump predicated aid to the country opening up a probe.

The public criticism of Vindman sparked bipartisan backlash on Tuesday.

"Questioning the dedication to country of people like Mr. Vindman, Lt. Col. Vindman who will be coming today, and others who have testified. I think that we need to show that we are better than that as a nation," Rep. Liz CheneyElizabeth (Liz) Lynn CheneyLawmakers call for extra security for anti-Erdoğan protesters  Live updates on impeachment: Schiff fires warning at GOP over whistleblower Overnight Defense: Protests at Trump's NYC Veterans Day speech | House Dems release Pentagon official's deposition transcript | Lawmakers ask Trump to rescind Erdogan invite MORE (R-Wyo.) told reporters without specifying whom she was responding to.

Biden called Trump's remarks 'despicable," while Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisWarren goes local in race to build 2020 movement 2020 Dems put focus on stemming veteran suicides The Memo: Democrats confront prospect of long primary MORE (D-Calif.) said he was a "disgrace."