Ten Republican members of the House of Representatives voted in favor of the impeachment of President Donald Trump on Wednesday, but not one of them came from Wisconsin. Even Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI8), who called the January 6 attack on the Capitol “absolute banana republic crap,” voted against impeachment.
The second impeachment passed 232 to 197 making Trump the only president to be impeached twice. The trial in the U.S. Senate will not take place until after former Vice President Joe Biden becomes President of the United States on January 20. The Republican leader in the Senate, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) may vote to convict Trump, according to the Associated Press.
Below are statements from the Republican members of Wisconsin’s delegation to the House of Representatives:
Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI6):
“Today, I voted against an intemperate attempt to impeach President Donald Trump,” said Grothman. “Once again, House Democrats, many of whom are my friends, took to the House floor to claim that the riots in Washington, DC, last week were explicitly caused by President Trump. Some of the rhetoric they point to was typical political hyperbole and nothing that I have ever seen cause a riot.
“One thing that amazed me was the degree to which House Democrats do not realize why President Trump is so popular. Only he stepped up and dealt with the crisis at the border when so many other politicians did nothing. Only he stepped up and fought to bring our manufacturing jobs back from China after others watched them leave. And he has been a leading voice against ‘cancel culture,’ where billionaire technology company CEOs feel they have the right to say who is protected by the first amendment.
“I was particularly disappointed that several people on the Democratic side of the aisle attributed racism to the Trump phenomenon. I know many people in my district who support and contribute to President Trump and know none of them to be racists.
“Hopefully now that today’s vote is finished, Congress can get on to dealing with the important issues of the day, including fighting ‘cancel culture,’ ending the COVID-19 outbreak, improving our broken health care system and securing our borders.”
Rep. Bryan Steil (R-WI1):
“I voted against impeaching President Trump. This impeachment vote not only sets a horrible precedent for future administrations, but it further divides the country. Speaker Pelosi’s sham process included no hearings, no investigation, no witness testimony, and no due process. Despite all other challenges facing our country, like vaccine allocation and distribution, we are spending time on a divisive impeachment one week before the inauguration of the next president. When Congress uses its constitutional powers for political expediency, no one wins,” said Steil.
Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-WI7):
(Released January 12)
“Speaker Pelosi’s decision to move forward with another partisan effort to remove the president from office with just days remaining in his term is unnecessary.”
“The House heard, debated and rejected constitutionally authorized challenges to the electoral college last week – just as it did after the 2000, 2004 and 2016 elections when Democratic lawmakers lodged objections using the same framework in response to the concerns of their constituents. That is how our system of government works. Inflaming an already volatile situation, as this rushed and irresponsible ‘re-impeachment’ push promises to, is exactly the wrong approach.”
“The electoral count has been certified, Joe Biden will be the 46th President of the United States, and I plan to attend his inauguration. It is now time for all of us – Democrats and Republicans alike – to turn down the temperature, condemn criminal violence and intimidation on all sides, stop the political score-settling, and move on with the business of the American people.”
Rep. Scott Fitzgerald (R-WI5):
(Updated: statement following the vote)
“It is ridiculous and irresponsible for Speaker Pelosi to rush an impeachment through the House of Representatives without the results of an investigation or substantive congressional debate on the issue. If the Speaker was truly interested in healing the divisions in our country, then she would not be calling for this drastic and unprecedented action. The Speaker has turned this process into political theater that will not help the nation move forward. The American people deserve better.”
(Released January 12)
“Speaker Pelosi has taken the unprecedented action of urging the Vice President to improperly use the 25th Amendment to remove the powers of a sitting President. This legislation is both misguided, inappropriate, and clearly contrary to the intent of the Amendment, which was designed to address Presidential incapacity or disability. Furthermore, the Vice President has informed the Speaker that he has no intention of invoking the Amendment, making today’s action purely a political exercise.
“The violence I saw firsthand last week is intolerable and unacceptable but Speaker Pelosi’s plans to disempower the President with the 25th Amendment or remove him by impeachment are not the solution. The President has less than eight days remaining in his term and trying to impeach this President a second time, which has never happened before in the history of our country, is just one more divisive and political act.”
Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI8):
Excerpt from his column in the Wisconsin State Journal explaining his vote against impeachment:
I strongly opposed the unconstitutional and dangerous effort to overturn the election on Jan. 6, but I think impeachment accomplishes nothing.
First, let’s be candid. President Donald Trump bears responsibility for the tragic events of Jan. 6. He lied to his supporters, insisted that his “sacred landslide” election was stolen, and suggested that Vice President Mike Pence should or even could reverse the outcome. He then dithered for hours as the vice president, the Congress and its employees were in mortal danger, castigating Pence as a coward.
Many of my colleagues carry a heavy share of blame as well, jumping into the fray for political advantage. And of course, those in the insurrectionist mob who chose to desecrate our seat of government, attack our police and embarrass our country must face the full force of the law.
In wake of this tragedy, failing the president’s resignation, a swift and strong censure from Congress is the most prudent path forward. Yet House Democrats refused our good faith offer of censure. Instead, they have rushed to impeach the president even though any trial in the Senate would likely begin after he leaves office, and therefore it will not remove President Trump from office and is unlikely to prevent President Trump from holding office again.
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Gallagher also made a statement in support of Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY), the House Republican Conference Chair, who supported the impeachment of Trump: