This week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) publicly announced that the House would be developing formal articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, and now, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) says that several of his Republican colleagues are considering voting in favor of impeachment when the case reaches the Senate, which will presumably be sooner than later at this point. Although he didn’t single anyone out by name, if even just a handful of Republicans decide to vote in favor of impeachment, that could give Democrats the majority they need to approve the case and remove Trump from office.
The reveal came at the end of a discussion about a range of different foreign policy topics. Morning Joe co-host Willie Geist asked:
‘Quick final question, different topic: have you spoken to a single Republican colleague in the Senate who’s even considering voting for impeachment.’
Murphy replied with a simple:
‘You have? Okay, would you like to name him or her.’
Murphy explained in response:
‘No… it’s a small list, on one hand. And by the way, I don’t buy this secret ballot thing. If there was a secret ballot, there would still be only a handful of them who would vote to impeach.’
That certainly tracks with the already documented Republican response to Trump’s corruption. Not a single Republican in the House has admitted any support for Democrats’ impeachment push — although one now former Republican has. Michigan’s Justin Amash switched from Republican to registered independent after announcing that he supported the impeachment inquiry. Following that announcement, he has faced rounds of the expected antagonism from the president’s inner circle, who’ve made their melodramatic disgust known via plenty of angry tweets.
Republicans in the Senate have occasionally broken with the president. For instance, a handful of them repeatedly voted against GOP healthcare plans that essentially consisted of tearing apart Obamacare.
Instead of even acknowledging the evidence that has accumulated against the president, the majority of Republicans have resorted to extremely outlandish attempted defenses of Trump’s conduct. The president sought to tie military aid for Ukraine to them producing dirt on the Bidens and Democrats via an investigation into supposed corruption — although that supposed corruption, including the alleged transfer of a hacked Democratic email server to Ukraine, simply never happened. The company responsible for Democratic (and Republican!) tech security is not Ukrainian, although some have claimed that it is.
That hasn’t stopped Republicans. In their own report summarizing the initial part of the impeachment inquiry, they packed in the conspiracy theories about supposed corrupt Ukrainian meddling in the 2016 U.S. elections. On national television, prominent Trump ally Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) — who’s no doubt not one of those who Murphy had in mind — claimed that then-Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko was “actively working” for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. That simply did not happen.
Trump has kept up with the wild nonsense on his own time, though.
On Thursday, he ranted:
‘Nancy Pelosi just had a nervous fit. She hates that we will soon have 182 great new judges and sooo much more. Stock Market and employment records. She says she “prays for the President.” I don’t believe her, not even close. Help the homeless in your district Nancy.’
In other words — he’s still emptyhanded when it comes to fact-based arguments.