Republican Lawmaker Claims He Was First to Mention Impeachment
As Washington D.C. was gripped once more by anti-Trump hysteria Wednesday, some Republican lawmakers scrambled to be the loudest in their condemnation of the President — with one lawmaker going so far as to contact a left-wing publication to let them know that he was the first Republican to mention a possible impeachment.
The furor gripping Capitol Hill and the mainstream media was triggered by a New York Times report Tuesday outlining a memo by fired FBI Director James Comey. The memo reportedly said that Trump had asked Comey to quash the investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
While some Republicans were skeptical about what was essentially a report about part of a memo about a conversation, some anti-Trump Republican lawmakers pounced. Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), a long-time Trump opponent, told CBS News’s Bob Schieffer, “It’s reaching the point where it’s of Watergate size and scale.”
“Every couple of days, there’s a new aspect of this really unhappy situation… None of us, no matter what our political leanings are, no matter how we feel about Trump, feel this is not good for America,” McCain said.
On Wednesday, Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), told reporters that if the details in the memo were true, it would merit impeachment. According to The Hill, Amash was also asked if he trusted Comey or Trump’s word more. He responded: “I think it’s pretty clear I have more confidence in Director Comey.”
Quickly a number of outlets reported Amash’s remarks, calling him the first Republican to float Trump’s impeachment.
However, after left-wing outlet Mother Jones reported Amash’s remarks as such, the outlet said it was then contacted by a spokeswoman for Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), who reportedly told them: “Congressman Curbelo was actually the first Republican to mention impeachment.”
The spokeswoman was apparently referring to remarks Curbelo made Tuesday night on CNN in which he called for Comey to testify under oath, and said what was outlined in the Times report could be obstruction of justice.
“Obviously any effort to stop the federal government from conducting an investigation, any effort to dissuade federal agents from proceeding with an investigation, is very serious and could be construed as obstruction of justice,” Curbelo said.
While Curbelo said he wasn’t necessarily accusing anyone of anything, he later added, “Obstruction of justice, in the case of Nixon, in the case of Clinton in the late 90s, has been considered an impeachable offense.”
“This daily dose of controversy, of scandal, of instability, is bad for the government and I think it’s also very taxing on the American people,” he said.
Mother Jones editor Jeremy Schulman referenced the Curbelo conversation as proof of “how bad it’s gotten for Trump.”
— Jeremy Schulman (@jeremyschulman) May 17, 2017
The outlet also corrected the article and provided a correction note outlining the conversation.