A New Jersey Democrat keeps a framed picture of himself and President Donald Trump in his Capitol Hill office, as he said to USA Today that the president is perhaps “unsavory,” but “not impeachable.”
Rep. Jeff Van Drew (D-N.J.), one of the two Democrats who refused to support the impeachment inquiry against President Trump, and pointed out that to date, no president has been ousted via impeachment, and to let a “small elite group” of lawmakers proceed with the inquiry with the 2020 presidential election around the corner was not only unfathomable, but also un-American, USA Today reports.
Democrats are investigating in their impeachment inquiry whether the president has engaged in “bribery” during a July 25 call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and pressured Ukraine to probe political rival Joe Biden and his son Hunter in exchange for military aid.
But both presidents have firmly denied wrongdoing and dismissed the accusations.
The aid to Ukraine also flowed without condition, and Democrats to date have not been able to establish concrete evidence for any wrongdoing by the president.
“To some folks, that’s reminiscent of what was done to kings and queens many years ago,” Van Drew said. “Everything our country doesn’t stand for.”
Rep. Will Hurd (R-Texas), member of the House Intelligence Committee, believes that President Trump hasn’t done anything that is impeachable.
But he also said he believed “an impeachable offense should be compelling, overwhelmingly clear, and unambiguous, and it’s not something to be rushed or taken lightly,” Hurd said during a Nov. 21 hearing, adding, “I’ve not heard evidence proving the president committed bribery or extortion.”
The New Jersey Democrat also warned that, if Democrats fail to impeach the president, he could claim exoneration and beating him in the upcoming election would prove even more difficult.
“I say to folks sometimes: Watch what you wish for,” Van Drew said, and most his supporters agree.
Retired Army Staff Sgt. Clark Katz, 78, said that the impeachment inquiry against the president has damaged the country greatly.
“I think what they’ve done by creating this impeachment is create an image in the world that says: ‘Hey, it’s not a democracy,'” Katz, a registered independent who voted for Barack Obama in 2012, Trump in 2016, and Van Drew in 2018, told USA Today. “How do other nations in the world perceive us now? Divided. Weak. Unable to get together and stand together.”
Norm Robertson, a retired engineer from Vineland who also voted for Van Drew and Trump, said that the inquiry is unnecessarily splitting the country.
“They should really spend their time on working on something else,” the 68-year-old said.
Van Drew, gaining popularity for his stance on impeachment, was backed by his voters as well as select Democrats.
Vineland longtime Democratic operative Lou Magazzu, who has known Van Drew for 25 years, commended the New Jersey congressman “an extraordinarily effective representative” who knows his district.
“My party, Democrats, have to decide: Would they rather have a more perfect progressive be the nominee and lose the seat, or would they be prepared to have a conservative Democrat who they may not agree with at all times hold the seat?” Magazzu said. “He’s not going to get pushed out. Not without a lot of people having his back.”