These Are the Republicans Who Voted to Impeach Trump

Date: 2021-01-23T09:26:59-05:00

Location: www.nytimes.com

As the House voted Wednesday to formally charge President Trump with inciting violence against the government of the United States, 10 Republicans cast their votes in favor.

The vote came exactly one week after the Capitol was breached by an angry mob of Trump loyalists.

In 2019, not a single Republican voted in favor of impeachment. House Republican leaders said they would not formally lobby members of the party against voting to impeach the president this time. Here are the Republicans who voted to impeach on Wednesday.

Representative John Katko of New York was the first Republican to publicly announce that he would back the impeachment proceedings. A former federal prosecutor, Mr. Katko said he looked at the facts of the siege, which began as lawmakers were working to certify the presidential election results.

“It cannot be ignored that President Trump encouraged this insurrection — both on social media ahead of Jan. 6, and in his speech that day,” Mr. Katko said in a statement. “By deliberately promoting baseless theories suggesting the election was somehow stolen, the president created a combustible environment of misinformation, disenfranchisement, and division. When this manifested in violent acts on Jan. 6, he refused to promptly and forcefully call it off, putting countless lives in danger.”

Not holding the president accountable for his actions would be “a direct threat to the future of our democracy,” he said.

Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the No. 3 House Republican, said on Tuesday evening that she would vote to impeach, citing the president’s role in an insurrection that caused “death and destruction in the most sacred space in our Republic.”

“The President of the United States summoned this mob, assembled the mob, and lit the flame of this attack,” she said in a statement. “Everything that followed was his doing. None of this would have happened without the president. The president could have immediately and forcefully intervened to stop the violence. He did not. There has never been a greater betrayal by a president of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution.”

Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, a frequent critic of Mr. Trump, joined his Republican colleagues on Tuesday evening, saying the nation was in uncharted waters. He said that Mr. Trump “encouraged an angry mob to storm the United States Capitol to stop the counting of electoral votes.”

“There is no doubt in my mind that the president of the United States broke his oath of office and incited this insurrection,” he said in a statement, adding that if the president’s actions “are not worthy of impeachment, then what is an impeachable offense?”

Representative Fred Upton of Michigan issued a statement saying that he would vote to impeach after President Trump “expressed no regrets” for what had happened at the Capitol.

“I would have preferred a bipartisan, formal censure rather than a drawn-out impeachment process,” Mr. Upton said. “I fear this will now interfere with important legislative business and a new Biden administration. But it is time to say: Enough is Enough.”

Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington State said that she would vote to impeach because she believed that the president had acted in violation of his oath of office.

“I understand the argument that the best course is not to further inflame the country or alienate Republican voters,” she said. “But I am a Republican voter. I believe in our Constitution, individual liberty, free markets, charity, life, justice, peace and this exceptional country. I see that my own party will be best served when those among us choose truth.”

A sixth Republican, Representative Dan Newhouse of Washington State, announced his plans to vote for impeachment during a debate on the topic in the House on Wednesday.

Mr. Newhouse said that others, “including myself, are responsible for not speaking out sooner — before the president misinformed and inflamed a violent mob.”

“There is no excuse for President Trump’s actions,” he added. “The president took an oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Last week, there was a domestic threat at the door of the Capitol, and he did nothing to stop it. That is why with a heavy heart and clear resolve, I will vote yes on these articles of impeachment.”

Representative Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio said that he had spent recent days trying to make sense of what had unfolded in the Capitol. What he concluded, he said, was that President Trump “helped organize and incite a mob that attacked the United States Congress in an attempt to prevent us from completing our solemn duties as prescribed by the Constitution.”

“During the attack itself, the president abandoned his post while many members asked for help, thus further endangering all present,” Mr. Gonzalez said. “These are fundamental threats not just to people's lives but to the very foundation of our Republic.”

Representative Peter Meijer, a freshman congressman from Michigan, said in a statement that the president had “betrayed and misled millions with claims of a ‘stolen election’” and that during the riot at the Capitol he “shrank from leadership when the country needed it most.”

“President Trump betrayed his oath of office by seeking to undermine our constitutional process, and he bears responsibility for inciting the insurrection we suffered last week,” Mr. Meijer said. “With a heavy heart, I will vote to impeach President Donald J. Trump.”

Representative Tom Rice of South Carolina also voted for impeachment.

In a statement, Mr. Rice had a blunt critique of President Trump. “I have backed this President through thick and thin for four years,” he said. “I campaigned for him and voted for him twice. But, this utter failure is inexcusable.”

After casting his vote to impeach, Representative David Valadao of California said on Twitter that “President Trump was, without question, a driving force in the catastrophic events” that took place at the Capitol.

“His inciting rhetoric was un-American, abhorrent, and absolutely an impeachable offense,” he added. “It’s time to put country over politics.”

Nicholas Fandos, Glenn Thrush, and Jake Frankenfield contributed reporting.