Top GOP Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC) shocked the Senate by ordering former Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-JY) to declare the impeachment as unconstitutional and oppose the Democrat push to impeach President Trump.
Arguing that impeaching Trump after leaving office is unconstitutional and would create an endless series of impeachments as political warfare, Graham said: “…I think it is unconstitutional to impeach a person who is out of office. That will create never-ending revenge against Presidents, particularly former Presidents.”
McConnell, reportedly furious with Trump and blaming him for the Republican Senate losses in Georgia has not publicly opposed the impeachment of Trump, though he would not change the Senate schedule to hold an impeachment trial. He wrote: “While the press has been full of speculation, I have not made a final decision on how I will vote and I intend to listen to the legal arguments when they are presented to the Senate.”
After the House approved the single article of impeachment in a bipartisan vote, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has not sent it to the Senate.
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) warned Senate Republicans that voting to convict President Donald Trump would destroy the Republican Party. Paul, in an interview on Fox News pointed out that if Republican leadership supported impeachment, they would be responsible for the destruction of the Republican Party. He also reminded Republican leadership that Trump attracted millions of new people to the party. Paul explained:
My fear is that if Republicans, particularly Republican leadership goes along with this impeachment, they’ll destroy the party. I think it is a hugely partisan exercise on the part of the Democrats. But for Republicans who go along with it, I think they will destroy our party. Donald Trump isn’t everything in the party but he did bring a lot of people to the party.
Graham agreed with Paul and called on Republican leaders to save the party and lead. He said: “As to the Republican Party, if we throw in the towel, or perceived to have thrown in the towel, and not fighting against this impeachment, the Republican Party, as Rand Paul said, will crack up. So I’m asking Republican leaders in the Senate to lead.
Reiterating his call for McConnell to lead Graham directly appealed to McConnell to fight back against impeachment: “…what we need right now is for Senator McConnell to unequivocally say that the second impeachment of Donald Trump after he leaves office is not only unconstitutional, it is bad for the country, and stand up and fight back.”
Graham and Paul are right. If Republican leaders vote to convict President Trump, the Republican party can say goodbye to all the millions of Trump supporters the president worked so hard to bring in.