Days after receiving a full pardon from President Donald Trump for multiple convictions of murdering unarmed civilians in Afghanistan, 1st Lt. Clint Lorance appeared on Trump’s favorite morning program on Monday to tell the president that he loved him for absolving him of war crimes.
Reportedly overruling top military leaders, the president issued pardons on Friday for Lorance, who was sentenced to 19 years in prison in 2013 for ordering his soldiers to fire upon three Afghan men, and Army Maj. Mathew L. Golsteyn, who faced murder charges for killing an unarmed Afghan citizen he thought was a bomb maker.
The president also reversed a demotion for Chief Petty Officer Edward Gallagher, who was recently found not-guilty of murdering a teen ISIS fighter.
During his Monday morning appearance on Fox & Friends alongside co-host Pete Hegseth, an Iraq War veteran who has privately lobbied Trump to pardon accused and convicted war criminals, Lorance took aim at high-ranking military officers for questioning the pardons.
“I think folks that start putting stars on their collar, anybody that’s got to be confirmed by the Senate for a promotion, they are no longer a soldier,” Lorance exclaimed. “They are a politician. And so I think they lose some of their values. And they certainly lose a lot of their respect from their subordinates when they do what they did to me, which was, you know, throw me under the bus.”
Co-host Ainsley Earhardt, meanwhile, gleefully noted that Trump’s “timing is perfect because next week is Thanksgiving.” This then prompted her to let her guest know that he could directly address the president via Fox’s cameras.
“If the president is watching, what do you want to say to him?” Earhardt asked.
“I love you, sir,” Lorance declared. “You are awesome!”
He went on to say that Trump needs a “better team around” him and “more people watching your back.” Lorance also groused that if someone is working in the White House who doesn’t agree with the president, they need to “go home.”
“Well said,” Hegseth replied.
The segment concluded with Earhardt holding back tears while thanking Lorance for serving his country as the pardoned vet shook hands with all three co-hosts.