Rep. Steve Scalise Complains of ‘Soviet-Style Impeachment Process’

By Melanie Arter | November 1, 2019 | 2:46pm EDT
Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)
Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

( – House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) reacted to the House vote to formally launch an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump, by calling it a “Soviet-style impeachment process.”

“When we talk about the vote, I think it’s important to know when you see that not only did every single Republican reject the Soviet-style impeachment process, but we were even joined by Democrats who can’t stand it anymore. If you look at where we are right now, we’re at an important point in history,” he said.

“Clearly, there are people that we serve with that don’t like the results of the 2016 election, and that’s their prerogative, but the country next year will be deciding who our president is going to be. It should not be Nancy Pelosi and a small group of people that she selects that can determine who’s going to be our president,” Scalise said.

The congressman said the resolution talks about fairness, but it’s not fair that the chairman can decide who Trump’s witnesses are, whether he likes the witnesses, and whether he will allow the president’s legal counsel in the room.

“If you look at the resolution today, they talk about fairness. Now if they really think that they can tell people it’s fair that only the chairman gets to decide who the witnesses are, and they give us an opportunity to call witnesses, but if the chair says they don’t like the witnesses, the witnesses don’t come forward. They allow the president to have legal counsel in the room unless the chair decides that they don’t want the president’s legal counsel in the room,” he said.

“That’s never happened before with the Clinton impeachment, with the Nixon impeachment. Republican and Democrat alike - both sides were treated equally. Both sides could call witnesses,” Scalise pointed out.

“The president’s legal counsel was in the room, not at the discretion of the chair, but because it’s fair, and so when you look at this Soviet-style process, it shows you that they don’t really want to get at the truth. They want to remove a sitting president,” he said.

“In fact, the author of the articles of impeachment said, if they don’t impeach the president, he will get re-elected. Now that’s not why we have impeachment. Alexander Hamilton made it very clear. His concern when they were trying to promote the Constitution was that he didn’t want to see impeachment used for political purposes. Yet, that’s what happened today,” Scalise said. 

“He predicted it, and it happened today. It’s a sham. It shouldn’t have happened. It’s a tainted process that Adam Schiff’s been conducting, that Nadler might one day conduct,” the congressman added.

Scalise said the House should be taking up legislation on lowering drug prices, properly funding the military, and improving trade relations with Canada and Mexico, but it can’t because House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) won’t bring those bills to the floor, because “she’s infatuated with impeachment.”


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