Republicans have finally had enough.
On Wednesday, dozens of House Republicans made their anger known and protested the closed door impeachment proceeding Democrats were conducting, holding a press conference and delaying the proceeding until they were allowed in.
Now, on Thursday, the Senate is backing up the GOP in the House.
Senate Judiciary Chair Lindsey Graham and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that they would be introducing a resolution today to condemn the House Democrats “illegitimate impeachment inquiry.”
Like their fellows in the House, they are condemning the lack of transparency and the closed door proceedings, in addition to questioning the validity of the inquiry to begin with given that there has been no formal vote of the House in favor of such a proceeding.
“This is a kangaroo court and it will not stand,” Graham said this week. “I’ve got a resolution saying if you’re going to impeach the president give him the same rights that Richard Nixon had and that Bill Clinton had…what’s going on now is disgusting.” …
— Erik Wasson (@elwasson) October 24, 2019
McConnell said he “obviously” supported the effort. His support is key because he would control whether any impeachment is basically rejected if it reaches the Senate.
Republicans and the GOP base have been very unhappy with the way the Democrats have been proceeding. Democrats have been trying to play both ends against the middle, appeasing their base by claiming they’re having an impeachment inquiry despite having no vote, while not having to put the issue or their vulnerable members in pro-Trump districts on the record in such a vote.
But in doing so, Democrats are deviating from precedent that there’s a vote before proceeding with an inquiry. If the House has the power of impeachment, as the Constitution says, then the House and only the House has that power. And the power of the House can only be shown by a formal vote, not by the pronouncement of the House Speaker or any single member of the House.
In the case of Bill Clinton, not only did you have a formal House vote for the inquiry, you had a finding by Ken Starr of 11 grounds, including perjury, obstruction of justice, witness-tampering and abuse of power which preceded it. Now you have none of that.
On Tuesday, Graham called the process Democrats had taken unconstitutional, according to the Daily Caller.
“Here’s the point of this resolution. Any impeachment vote based on this process, to me, is illegitimate, is unconstitutional, and should be dismissed in Senate without a trial,” Graham told Fox News’ “Hannity.”
The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee said the resolution “puts the Senate on record condemning the house for the future of the presidency. We cannot allow future presidents and this president to be impeached based on an inquiry in the House that’s never been voted upon that does not allow the president to confront the witness against him, to call witnesses on his behalf and cross-examine people who are accusing him of misdeeds,” Graham told Sean Hannity.
He said the process denied the president basic legal rights.
“All I’m asking is give Donald Trump the same rights as Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton had when it comes to impeachment. I’m insisting that Donald Trump be given the same rights that any American has at when you’re giving a parking ticket to confront the witnesses against you, can’t be based on hearsay … ”
This is a big signal to Democrats that their efforts are going to be dead on arrival in the Senate.
And their efforts wouldn’t just be dead there, but in the 2020 election as well unless they stop the madness.