Rep. Amash responds to criticism of impeachment remarks, talks next steps

WASHINGTON - The lone Republican on Capitol Hill who's publicly come out in favor of impeaching the president is responding to backlash from his party.

On Saturday, Rep. Justin Amash, R-Grand Rapids, tweeted his opinion that President Donald Trump's conduct is "impeachable" and Attorney General William Barr intentionally misrepresented the Mueller report to the American public.

Some have questioned Amash's timing, considering the redacted Mueller report has been out for a month.

"I — thought it was the appropriate time to get it covered," Amash says.

Though Amash has not been publicly supported by fellow Republicans on this matter, he says he doesn't feel "left out."  When asked what he plans to do next, Amash made it clear he won't be the one to begin an impeachment inquiry.

"Well, that will be on Speaker (Nancy) Pelosi," Amash says. "I mean they're discussing that right now on the Democratic side and I think that they're discussing whether to proceed with hearings and other investigations, and that's up to the speaker."

Any member of the House of Representatives can introduce an impeachment resolution, not just the speaker. Pelosi has made it clear that she would rather have the president voted out of office in 2020 than go through an impeachment. Still, Amash is leaving it to the Democrats.

"I would be supportive of doing some more hearings and more investigations," Amash says. "I think that I have the evidence I need, based on the Mueller report. Some other people don't and want to hear it in a different way. I think that would be helpful. But that's really up to the speaker and on any particular issue I'll decide, based on the particular facts of the issue. So it doesn't mean I'd be supportive of everything Democrats do, no."

Top House Republican Kevin McCarthy pushed back Tuesday against Amash, saying he is out of step with others in the party and with Americans. But the most conservative group of House Republicans declined to oust Amash from its ranks.

"Mr. Amash always has a different voting record than most of us, anyway," McCarthy told reporters Tuesday.

McCarthy told Fox News that Amash's tweets are just a stunt and that he is looking for attention.

In calling for Trump's impeachment, Amash stepped farther even than some Democrats.

Pelosi is holding her increasingly restive caucus to a step-by-step process by which the courts and perhaps the House would weigh in on Trump's lack of cooperation. Multiple committees are investigating Trump's business dealings and other conduct.

Pelosi and her allies say it would take more Republicans than just Amash, plus broad public sentiment, to trigger impeachment proceedings.

Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Detroit, described a tense meeting Monday night in which a vocal minority of Pelosi's leadership team spoke in favor of launching an impeachment inquiry and Pelosi held firm.

"We've got to lay the groundwork, lay the framework, before you start anything like that," Dingell said. "Because a partisan impeachment would divide this country further."

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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  • George

    Amash is a disgrace to his party and the sate of Michigan. He’s whats called a ” RINO ” Republican in name only. If anyone is impeached it should him.

    • lml25

      Amash only encourages Democrats to keep it going.Trump needs to start his own party–the GOP hasn’t supported Trump as it should have–especially the first year.Trump needs to get people to run against both Dems and Repubs–a MAGA party that will support a zero tolerance immigration policy,lower taxes to fund a higher birthrate in the US for selected groups–not minorities.A long term goal that needs to start in 2021–if Trump can get re-elected.

      • On It

        He will prevail in 20. Not so much for China tied Amash. Look up his tool business with his brother, then you will know why he’s stepping up. Not for us……just for himself. Kick him out of the GOP. It’s Trump’s GOP now, & they know it, no need to change if you’re Trump.

  • C

    Prediction: Amash will run as a Libertarian in 2020. He’ll lose, but possibly take enough Republican votes away from Trump to enable a Democrat to win, much like Ross Perot may have affected the outcome in 1992, enabling Clinton to beat Bush. He’ll resign from the House and there will be a special election to find his successor. He’ll then retire. I can see something like that happening.

    • On It

      Libertarians have gone left, they outed themselves when they dissed Ron Paul. Amash is done now. No one will want him, as it should be.

    • DaMailman

      Just as likely to siphon off moderate Democrat voters (if there are any left) who are disenfranchised by the party’s extreme leftward shift.

      • C

        Democrats typically are less apt to jump parties or not vote at all than are Republicans. The difference in behavior is not huge, but it’s there. Whether you call it party loyalty or stubborn idiocy, Democrats are less apt to ‘jump ship’ and abandon the party than are their Republican counterparts. Like their party members in the Congress, they resist ‘crossing the aisle’ and vote the other way.

  • Bighorse

    Amash is angry with Trump because Trump’s trade negotiations with China are threatening the profits of Michigan Industrial Tools, founded by Amash’s father, Attallah. Michigan Industrial Tools is, in turn, owned by Dynamic Source, Inc. based in China. It’s all about money and Amash is being financially hurt by Trump’s tariffs. It’s a pity that Amash cannot be honest about that but, then again, when has Amash been honest about anything?

      • DumpJustin

        Only looking out for himself!

        Amash’s two brothers also have positions at Michigan Industrial Tools, and the trio shares ownership of Dynamic Source International, a Chinese company that is a supplier to Michigan Industrial Tools.

  • Clark

    I can’t wait til this clown leaves office. Mr.Amash is a traitor to this country and the people that voted for him. The people that want to impeach the president, want to flush this great country down the drain. Mr.Amash wishes the same.

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