The U.S. House of Representatives voted 232 to 197 to impeach President Donald Trump a second time after the Capitol riot that critics say the president incited. The vote was mostly along partisan lines, however ten House Republicans joined House Democrats to vote to impeach the president.
Iowa’s four members of Congress already expressed their views on impeachment and did so again on Wednesday before the vote.
U.S. Rep. Cindy Axne, D-Iowa, voted to impeach.
She released the following statement prior to the vote:
One week ago, the dangerous and deceitful rhetoric disseminated by President Trump incited an insurrection that led to the deaths of five Americans – including one Capitol Police officer.
This violent attack on our democracy was no accident. For months, the President had used the power and pulpit of his office to spread lies about the legitimacy and security of our elections. And then, in a desperate attempt to overturn his own loss, he pressed his supporters to impede the certification of his own election.
The President’s actions – the deliberate repetition of falsehoods and calls to ignore a democratic election – must have consequences. Incitement of an insurrection is a high crime against the United States, and the Constitutional consequence for such an act is impeachment. Therefore, I will vote to impeach President Donald Trump today.
Regardless of the remaining time in the President’s term, his crime is too great for us to ignore. For the safety of our nation and its citizens, President Trump must be removed from office.
U.S. Rep. Ashley Hinson, R-Iowa, voted no. She released the following statement saying the president bears responsibility, but opposed impeachment.
The violence in the Capitol last week was unacceptable and those involved should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. As more details emerge about the attack, I am increasingly grateful to the heroic Capitol Police officers who kept us safe–and am devastated they lost some of their own in the name of protecting us.
I believe the President bears responsibility and that is why I urged him personally to call off those who were violently storming the Capitol last week. I wish he had spoken up sooner, but he did not. Words matter; there must be accountability for those who feed into dangerous rhetoric on either side of the ideological spectrum.
However, impeachment is the wrong path forward for several reasons. Speaker Pelosi is bypassing regular order – including the process of collecting evidence, conducting committee hearings, and having preliminary votes – to rush toward a second impeachment of President Trump. Just a week out from a new Administration, impeachment will only serve to feed the flames and further divide our nation.
Next week, there will be a peaceful transition of power to the Biden Administration, and we must re-focus on moving this country forward and solving the everyday problems facing Americans. Amid the chaos, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to present real challenges to working people and businesses – Iowans are still trying to put food on the table, handle homeschooling, and struggling to pay their bills.
I remain focused on solving these problems. This week, my team and I continued to have productive conversations with the Biden Transition Team on ways we can work together for Iowans. I also spoke with Secretary-Designate Vilsack about key agriculture priorities I aim to work with him on and I hope he is confirmed by the Senate.
While last week was one of the darkest days in our nation’s history, I am committed to unifying our country and serving Iowans because I know there will be brighter days ahead.
U.S. Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, R-Iowa, voted no and issued the following statement:
As horrific as the events of January 6 were, President Trump has conceded and committed to an orderly transition of power on January 20. Impeaching him with 7 days remaining in his term would only further divide the nation and make it more difficult for President-Elect Joe Biden to unify and lead our nation. The people of Iowa sent me to Congress to work on health care reform, lower the cost of prescription drugs, and get Iowans safely back to work. That will be my focus.
U.S. Rep. Randy Feenstra, R-Iowa, also voted no. He released the following statement:
I will be voting no on impeachment. President Trump, who has committed to a peaceful transition of power, only has seven days left in his term. It is time for our country to come together and move forward — not to pursue divisive and rushed political exercises.
It has been a challenging year, but we must not forget that we are one Nation, under God — and I’m confident that together, we can work towards a brighter future. I was elected by the great people of Iowa’s 4th District to deliver results, and with their input and feedback, that’s exactly what I plan to do as we move forward and focus on conducting the business of our country.