Kellyanne Conway: Sondland "Leaned Into What Some Others In The Establishment Republican Party Were Doing" | Video | RealClearPolitics

Kellyanne Conway: Sondland "Leaned Into What Some Others In The Establishment Republican Party Were Doing"

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Counselor to the president, Kellyanne Conway, joins Ainsley Earhardt, Brian Kilmeade and Steve Doocy on 'Fox & Friends' to discuss the future of those who testified against President Trump that are in his administration.

DOOCY:  Kellyanne, toward the end of last week after the president was vindicated by the U.S. Senate and they went through their trial, the president essentially moved the Vindman twins from their posts in the White House back to where they were originally posted. And, Gordon Sondland, the ambassador to the E.U., got fired as well. I know they all serve at the pleasure of the president.
 
Are more heads going to roll in the wake of the people who testified against the president?
 
CONWAY:  In the case of the Vindman brothers, remember, they are detailed here. And I just want to say quickly what that means. So, they are employed today. They’re continually employed.
 
DOOCY:  Yes, they didn’t get fired. They just got relocated.
 
CONWAY:  That's right. And before, during, and after the testimony of Mr. Vindman, he was here, as was his twin brother at the NSC. They were free to move about the complex. I don’t work -- they work over in a different building than me but I know people who saw them routinely -- daily, in fact.
 
So this whole -- this whole ridiculous words by Chuck Schumer today in a letter -- retaliation and the president is exacting revenge and -- where? They're in -- they're working at the Army where they were. They were detailed to the NSC.
 
This is typical. I've had detailees on my small staff. This is very typical in the White House to have a detailee for a temporary period of time, who then returns to what their full-time job --
 
KILMEADE:  Right.
 
CONWAY:  -- is.
 
And in the case of Ambassador Sondland, here is someone who -- it was nice of the president to give him that post in the first place.
 
Here's somebody who was, you know -- I think leaned into what some others in the establishment Republican Party were doing. I had to cancel a fundraiser for Donald Trump late in the campaign. He wasn’t there. He wrote a big check to the inauguration but wasn’t really there before the president and probably and surprisingly, one for people like that. Not improbable and surprising for those of us around him.
 
And here's somebody who when he was testifying couldn’t keep his own story straight.
 
So, the president needs people around him not only who want to execute on his agenda --
 
DOOCY:  So, will there be more, Kellyanne?
 
KILMEADE:  So -- because you've got the whistleblower --
 
CONWAY:  Oh, I don’t -- maybe.
 
KILMEADE:  You've got the whistleblower and evidently, is a sense in the White House you know who it is. And you also have the anonymous author who puts out books and writes editorials. He's still on the inside.
 
CONWAY:  Yes. So, clearly, most of that book was written by somebody in the -- the book agent or the publishing house. But I think if you go back to the original op-ed, that was somebody's pen by his or herself -- sure.
 
Again, why would you want to be here if you don’t -- if you're spending your time writing books and op-eds instead of trying to at least do what many of us do, which is say to the president -- fully brief the president on any one issue so that you make sure he knows all the different consequences and options. And then he makes a decision because he was elected to something?
 
But these are people who don’t have access to the president. That was made very clear during those testimonies. The president says if I met that person, I didn’t even remember it. And under oath, most of them, except -- with the exception of one -- had to admit they had never discussed Ukraine --
 
KILMEADE:  Right.
 
CONWAY:  -- with the President of the United States. They have a different view --
 
DOOCY:  OK.
 
CONWAY:  -- as to what our policy should be.
 
So look, I'm always somebody who is taking a look at the deep state, but I would actually say the shallow state -- we have people, certainly in this administration, that are probably holdovers and also people who don’t believe in President Trump's agenda but should be really happy to be part of an administration where our national security and our economic security are robust.
 
And also, there are many men and women out there who would love to have these jobs in this administration and would do a great job, so I always have my eye on them. I have a real soft spot in my heart for those --
 
DOOCY:  All right.
 
CONWAY:  -- who are willing to serve and are qualified to do so.



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