House votes to impeach president; Southwestern Illinois representatives against measure
WASHINGTON, D.C. – President Donald Trump was impeached Wednesday for the second time by the U.S. House of Representatives, and again Southwestern Illinois congressional members were in opposition to the historic measure, which now heads for prosecution in the Senate, although it’s uncertain if the issue will be taken up before the president leaves office Jan. 20.
Ten Republicans, including Illinois Congressman Adam Kinzinger, voted for impeachment, breaking ranks with the party. The final vote was 232 to 197, with four Republican members not voting. Every Democrat voted for impeachment.
BOST STATEMENT ON IMPEACHMENT
U.S. Representative Mike Bost, R-Murphysboro, who represents the 12th Congressional District, released the following statement regarding the House of Representatives vote to impeach President Trump:
“If we are truly going to begin the work of healing the deep divisions in America, we must first turn down the temperature and tone down the rhetoric. I fear that efforts to impeach President Trump or force Vice President Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment will only make a bad situation worse. Therefore, I strongly oppose Speaker Pelosi on both tactics, which are being rushed through Congress with unprecedented speed and little opportunity for the president to defend himself. President Trump has committed to a peaceful transition of power one week from today; and we would all be best served by dedicating that short time to making the process as seamless as possible.”
MILLER STATEMENT ON IMPEACHMENT
Congresswoman Mary Miller, R-Oak Park, released the following statement to address the calls to impeach President Trump. Miller replaced retiring John Shimkus, the Collinsville Republican, in the recent election for 15th Congressional District.
“I join my colleagues in denouncing the violence that occurred in the Capitol last week. It was a very sad day in our nation.
“What this country desperately needs now is unity and healing. Impeaching the President with just 8 days left in his term will only divide us further. Each passing day spent on these articles is an opportunity lost to working on the priorities of our American families. President Trump will leave behind a legacy filled with remarkable achievements, including the protection of the unborn, creation of the world’s greatest economy, the restoration of American manufacturing, historic deregulation, secure borders, the negotiation of fair and balanced trade deals along with promoting peace around the world. I will oppose any articles set forth to impeach our President and pray for the immediate peace we need.”
STATEMENT BY RODNEY DAVIS
Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, who represents the 13th Congressional District, also voted against impeachment.
“We are at a perilous moment in our Nation’s history. President Trump, many of his allies in Congress, and media commentators on the right deserve blame for the circumstances that led up to one of the worst days this great country has ever seen. Since November, many in my party perpetuated the lie that the election was “stolen” and gave false hope to millions that the president could somehow remain in office after January 20th. That was never going to happen. There must be accountability for leaders who deliberately misled the public, but I fear that without thoughtful and clear-eyed leadership from both sides of the aisle, we are in danger of further violence and political unrest.
“While a convenient talking point, we must be honest that our country did not arrive at this moment in the last two months, or simply the last four years. Though many prefer not to admit it, political deception is a bipartisan disease that seems only to worsen and lead to violence. Last Wednesday is the second time in my short Congressional career that I’ve needed to thank law enforcement for saving my life during an act of political violence. The former because a deranged gunman believed leaders and agitators on the left that I and my Republican colleagues were a danger to America. We as a country have got to do better.
“There must be a full accounting of what happened leading up to and on the day of January 6th. Law enforcement must have all resources necessary to bring the perpetrators to justice. That investigation should be unimpeded and free from partisan influence. The investigation should be conducted in such a manner to sooth tensions and provide the public with confidence that law and order will prevail.
“Process matters. A snap impeachment conducted without a full investigation or without due process for the president accomplishes nothing. At a time when political tensions are at an all-time high, impeachment will drive people further into their corners and could lead to additional violence. Unlike what some Democratic leaders are saying, President Trump will not be removed from office under this process. The Democrats’ stated goal to punish the president and bar him from seeking federal office in the future certainly isn’t urgent. He will be removed from office under the law in less than one week. We need to lower temperatures, not enflame them. If, when a full accounting of the facts of January 6th comes in, Pelosi and the Democrats wish to punish President Trump, they can pursue that process with their party’s total control of the legislative and executive branches of the federal government.
“Our nation needs sober-minded leaders who will sooth a wounded electorate. President-elect Biden has missed an opportunity to act on his promise of unifying the country by calling for calm and pledging to listen to those who feel so ignored by our elected leaders. He is now the face of his party and will be the legitimately elected leader of our country in a matter days. I stand ready to work with President-elect Biden on solutions to the many problems our country faces. We should all wish President Biden success, for when he succeeds, our nation succeeds.”