Impeached forever? The GOP says not so fast.
House Republicans say they plan to remove the impeachment of President Donald Trump from the “books” if they regain power of the lower chamber in 2021, a move they began plotting even before the president was acquitted in the Senate on Wednesday.
While Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) declared that President Trump’s “impeachment will last forever,” members of the GOP say expunging the impeachment of the president is a very real possibility — even if it is largely symbolic.
What are the details?
The New York Post spoke with several members of the House GOP in an article published ahead of Wednesday’s Senate acquittal. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) told the outlet, “This is the fastest, weakest, most political impeachment in history. I don’t think it should stay on the books.”
Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) concurred, telling The Post, “The president should have never been impeached in the first place,” calling expungement “a good idea.”
Over the weekend, Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) declared on Twitter, “The House of Representatives should EXPUNGE this shame impeachment in January 2021! This was absolutely disgusting what Pelosi and [House impeachment manager Adam Schiff (D-Calif.)] just dragged our country through. The end is near not only for impeachment, but hopefully also for their abusive grip on their gavels.”
The House of Representatives should EXPUNGE this sham impeachment in January 2021!
This was absolutely disgusting what Pelosi and Schiff just dragged our country through. The end is near not only for impeachment, but hopefully also for their abusive grip on their gavels.
— Lee Zeldin (@RepLeeZeldin) February 2, 2020
Legal scholar Jonathan Turley — who was called by Republicans to testify during House impeachment proceedings — told The Post that even if the House were to vote on expunging the impeachment of the president, the move “would be more cathartic than constitutional.”
Turley reasoned, “Trump is impeached…Even if the Senate were to cancel the trial or dismiss the charges, impeachment is a historical and unavoidable fact.”
George Washington University professor Sarah Binder agrees. She told the Washington Examiner, “If a future Republican House were to vote to expunge the House-passed impeachment resolution, it would be a purely symbolic, even cosmetic move.”
Binder added, “This current House agreed to H.Res. 755. And while a future House could adopt a resolution that says it is striking the adoption from the Record, that doesn’t undo the fact that the current House agreed to those two articles of impeachment.”
Whether the record of the House impeachment is expunged or not, Minority Leader McCarthy declared after the Senate found the president “not guilty” that President Trump is now “acquitted for life.”
Acquitted for life. pic.twitter.com/HgqBXwpoWK
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) February 5, 2020
Author: Breck Dumas