Senator Umberg Urges Professor Yoo to Publically Apologize to Lt. Col. Alexander S. Vindman

November 5, 2019

ORANGE COUNTY — Today, during National Veterans and Military Families Month, Senator Thomas J. Umberg, sent a letter to University of California, Berkeley Professor of Law John Yoo, requesting that the professor retract and apologize for defamatory comments made regarding U.S. Army Lt. Colonel Alex Vindman mad last week. During her segment on the Fox News network, Laura Ingraham repeatedly implied that Vindman’s Ukrainian background could have had a nefarious influence on his judgment, after which Professor Yoo echoed her insinuations, saying, “some people might call that espionage.”

Joining in the chorus of other responsible leaders from around the country, Senator Umberg wrote to the law professor, urging him to apologize to the American war hero “in the same time slot, and to the same Fox News audience.”

“As a nation, we are fortunate that families such as the Vindmans, who possess unique language skills, combined with a sense of patriotism, devote their lives to our nation’s security,” wrote Senator Umberg. “My guess is that you felt motivated to insult and denigrate Lt. Col. Vindman because he had the courage to speak his mind regarding the actions (or inaction) of President Donald Trump regarding Ukraine.”

The letter continues to acknowledge Professor Yoo’s attempts to “walk back” his insults in more recent television appearances, though Senator Umberg’s letter suggests that this is not enough.

“If you wish to mitigate the harm you caused to a professional soldier by accusing him of espionage, then you should apologize to Lt. Col. Vindman in the same time slot, to the same Fox News audience that witnessed your defamatory accusation,” wrote Senator Umberg. “You may also wish to apologize to California’s taxpayers who pay your salary.”

Follow link to view letter: Letter to UC Berkeley Law Professor John Yoo by Senator Thomas J. Umberg


Senator Thomas J. Umberg represents the 34th Senate District, which includes the cities of Anaheim, Costa Mesa, Fountain Valley, Huntington Beach, Garden Grove, Long Beach, Los Alamitos, Midway City, Orange, Santa Ana, Seal Beach, and Westminster. Umberg is a retired U.S. Army Colonel, former federal prosecutor, and small businessman. He and his wife, Brigadier General Robin Umberg, USA (ret.), live in Orange County.