House Judiciary Committee ranking member Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., speaks during his opening statement during a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on the constitutional grounds for the impeachment of President Donald Trump, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA) has been a staunch defender of President Trump’s throughout the impeachment inquiry as well as a persistent critic of how Democratic “leaders” have handled the process. His facial expressions during House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler’s opening statement two weeks ago spoke for a lot of Republicans who are fed up and disgusted with how everything has played out.
Collins, who is fond of reminding Democrats in the House of rules they
deliberately conveniently keep ignoring forgetting, rose to the occasion once again Wednesday night in a fiery speech given shortly before the vote on the articles of impeachment started.
Stating that “a dark cloud is descending upon this house”, Collins spoke about a laundry list of things that were wrong about what he called the Democrats’ “sham impeachment” process, including House Majority Speaker Steny Hoyer’s earlier declaration that President Trump had been given every opportunity to “prove his innocence”, which was similar to remarks made by failed presidential candidate and Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) in interviews given earlier in the day.
Outraged, Collins turned to random members of Congress and the press corps, pretending to accuse them of something and demanding they “prove” their innocence. Afterwards, he pointed out that’s not how the process was supposed to work in America, where you are supposed to be presumed innocent, not guilty.
Collins then launched into a criticism of how Democrats tried to “tear down a foreign leader [Ukrainian president Zelensky] because [Democrats] couldn’t make their case.” Even worse, he remarked, Democrats in the House Judiciary Committee (of which Collins is the ranking member) said Zelensky looked like a “battered wife.”
“It is below the dignity of this body and this majority to tear down a foreign leader because they can’t make their case against this one,” Collins emphatically stated to applause from his Republican colleagues.
He also took a moment to remind people that Democrats including House Intel Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) had broken numerous rules in the impeachment inquiry process, also saying “members [and journalists] were smeared by drive-by political hacks” – a clear reference to Schiff’s accessing the personal phone records of Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA), investigative reporter John Solomon, and others including Trump’s personal attorneys in the Intel Committee’s final impeachment inquiry report released earlier this month.
Collins went on to declare that “chaos and mob rule” had began in the House, and that it was laughable that Democrats were talking in the House about “bravery” and the courage to stand up.
“The truth is on our side,” Collins asserted as he began a defense of President Trump from the accusations presented in the articles of impeachment by Democrats. “There was no pressure, no conditionality, there was nothing done to get the aid. And the aid actually came.”
In closing, and in a tone reminiscent of a Southern pastor, Collins told his colleagues “I am fearful, Madam Speaker, when I look out in that abyss I don’t know what I see, but I tell you what I do see. I see coming off a president who will put his head down even through this sham impeachment, and he will do his job. He will put the American people first. He will tell them that ‘I care about you.'”
His fellow Republicans gave him a standing ovation.
Watch Collins’ speech below:
Daaang. About the only thing he left out was “bless your heart.”