As the U.S. House of Representatives prepares to move forward on Wednesday with a vote to formally accuse President Donald Trump of inciting violence against the U.S. government, a small but growing number of Republicans have announced they support this effort.
The vote will take place exactly one week after the invasion of the U.S. Capitol by an angry mob of loyalists to Trump. Not a single Republican voted for the impeachment of the president in 2019, but Republican leaders in the House have said this time around they will not formally lobby or guide supporters against the impeachment vote.
It is the Republicans who intend to vote for impeachment.
Congressman John Katko
Katko of New York was the first Republican to publicly announce that he would support impeachment proceedings. A former federal prosecutor, he said he looked at the facts of the Capitol invasion, which began when parliamentarians were in session to certify the election results.
“It is impossible to ignore that President Trump encouraged this insurgency – on social media, before January 6, and in his speech that day,” Katko said in a statement.
“By intentionally promoting unsubstantiated theories suggesting that the election was somehow rigged, the President has created a fiery environment of disinformation, disenfranchisement and division. When all of this manifested in the form of violent acts, he immediately and convincingly refused to call for an end to the violent action. So it put countless lives at risk.
Failure to hold him accountable would constitute “a direct threat to the future of our democracy,” Katko says.
Ms. Liz Cheney
Cheney, of Wyoming, is the third highest ranking Republican leader in the House. She said Tuesday evening (12) that she would vote for impeachment, citing the role played by the president in an insurgency which “has caused death and destruction in the most sacred space of our Republic”.
“The president called this crowd, gathered the crowd and lit the flame for this attack,” he said in a statement. “All that followed was his job. None of this would have happened without the president. He could have intervened immediately and strongly to end the violence. That was not the case. There has never been such a betrayal of a president under his responsibility and the oath of allegiance to the Constitution.
Congressman Adam Kinzinger
Trump’s frequent critic, Illinois State Kinzinger joined his Republican counterparts on Tuesday night, saying the country was sailing in uncharted waters. He said Trump “enlisted an angry mob to invade Capitol Hill to prevent the electoral vote count.”
“For me, there is no doubt that the President of the United States violated the oath he took when he took office and incited this insurgency,” he said in a statement, adding that “if the president’s actions do not merit indictment, would an offense justify an indictment?”
Mr. Fred Upton
Upton of Michigan released a statement saying he decided to vote for impeachment after Trump “expressed no remorse” for what happened on Capitol Hill. “Formal, bipartisan censorship was better than a protracted impeachment process,” Upton said. “I’m afraid this process is now interfering with legislative work and the new Biden administration. But it is time to say “enough”. “
Deputy Jaime Herrera Beutler
Herrera Beutler, from Washington state, said he would vote to impeach Trump because he believes the president violated his oath of office with his actions. “I understand the argument that the best thing to do would be not to inflame the country further or alienate Republican voters,” she said.
“But I am a Republican voter. I believe in our Constitution, in individual freedom, in the free market, in charity, in life, in justice, in peace and in this exceptional country. I think my party will be better served when those of us who are in it choose the truth. “