Tim Morrison will testify before the House Impeachment Committees on Tuesday, which marks Day 3 of the public hearings concerning Donald Trump and his phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. It is believed that Morrison has insider knowledge on why $400 million in military aid was uncharacteristically withheld from America’s allied country for nearly a month after Trump asked for Zelensky to dig up information on political rival, Joe Biden.
Morrison, a lawyer, joined the Trump administration as the senior director of Weapons of Mass Destruction and Biodefense, and was tapped by John Bolton, former White House national security officer to replace Fiona Hill, who had been the White House’s top official on Russian affairs.
A Baltimore native, Morrison earned his law degree from George Washington University, and similar to his closed-door testimony, is expected to claim there was no “quid pro quo,” and that “nothing illegal took place.” However, U.S. Army lieutenant colonel Alexander Vindman, one of his former NSC deputies, testified that Morrison had concerns about the July 25th phone call between Trump and President Zelensky, and witness Bill Taylor said during his testimony that Morrison said had a “sinking feeling” after learning about Trump’s September 7th conversation with Gordon Sondland.
Here’s what you need to know about Tim Morrison:
1. Morrison Will Be Able to Claim Executive Privilege
In his role over the past 15 months, Morrison has had one-on-one conversations with Trump, a source told CNN, and he will have to decide which, if any parts of those talks, are shareable during his testimony.
Technically speaking, executive privilege is defined as direct interactions with the President. Barbara Van Gelder, Morrison’s lawyer, told CNN that privilege issues are fact specific and they will be handled in accordance with the House rules if they come up during the deposition.
2. Morrison Is Over 7 Feet Tall
If Morrison appears to tower over everyone in pictures, it’s because he’s extremely tall. The former NSC advisor stands at 7’1, but when he attended University of Minnesota, he didn’t become a basketball star, he earned his degree in Political Science.
Figuring out how tall Morrison has become a trending topic on Twitter. Once pictures of him arriving to his closed-door testimony were released, it was impossible to ignore how small everyone else appeared in his wake. And for those wondering, Morrison is indeed taller than former FBI director James Comey, who is 6’8.
3. He’s Been Described As a ‘Nuclear Superhawk’
After graduating from law school at George Washington University, Morrison was planning to head to the Department of Justice when he was offered a job to work at former Arizona Republican Senator Jon Kyl’s office. Morrison worked there for over 17 years.
When Fiona Hill stepped down, Tim Morrison was brought on by John Bolton to work for him as his new senior director for countering weapons of mass destruction on the National Security Council. Morrison, an arms control expert has been described as a “nuclear superhawk,” meaning he has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to nuclear weapons.
A former State Department official called him “the hardlinest of the hardline on nuclear policy” to The Daily Beast, while a former NNSA ex-official described his personality as hostile and “unpleasant.”
4. He Goes By The Name ‘Tim Mo’ On Facebook
Even though Morrison goes by shortened name ala J.Lo on Facebook, it’s pretty east to tell that it’s the White House staffer, especially because he’s wearing the black sunglasses he wore to testify in October.
While he’s only posted a total of four pictures on the social media site, there are two in which he appears to be hanging out with a young child, who may or may not be his son. Otherwise, there is very little information on his personal life, marital status, or extended family.
5. Morrison Stepped Down From The NSC Just Before Testifying
On October 30, it was confirmed that the senior Nation Security Council official would leave his recently obtained post just one day before his closed-door depositions concerning Trump and the Ukrainian phone call were about to begin.
Morrison said in statement, “After 19 years of government service, I have decided to leave the NSC. I have not submitted a formal resignation at this time because I do not want anyone to think there is a connection between my testimony today and my impending departure. I plan to finalize my transition from the NSC after my testimony is complete.”
“During my time in public service, I have worked with some of the smartest and most self-sacrificing people in this country. Serving at the White House in this time of unprecedented global change has been the opportunity of a lifetime. I am proud of what I have been able, in some small way, to help the Trump Administration to accomplish,” he added.