Sunday, December 22, 2019

GOP Congress Enthusiastic About Protecting Trump? Actions Speak Louder Then Words

Much has been said about the Impeachment of Donald Trump.  On Wednesday there was 11 hours of debate.  One GOP Congressman even compared the proceedings in the house to the trial of Jesus before Pontius Pilate.  All GOP Congressmen and did vote against impeachment with three Democrats.  

The graph above shows that the vote on the second article was a five minute vote with 229 voting yes 198 voting no and one Democrat voting present (Tulsi Gabbard).  After the first minute of the vote the percentage of Democrats (blue line) casting their vote was higher than the Republicans (red line) for the five minutes.  The vote was held open for an additional eleven minutes to make sure that as many as possible voted.  Tulsi Gabbard voted present at the 1:18 mark.  You can see the progress of the vote in the clip below.

For comparison the next day the House voted on the State and Local Taxes Act.  It was passed 218-206 on another mostly party line vote.  Like the Article II vote, it was a five minute vote but the percentage of Republicans voting was much closer to the Democrats for the five minutes.  The vote was held open for  only one minute and 22 seconds as you can see in the video below.

The slow response to the impeachment articles also occurred in the vote on the first article (a 15 minute vote).  It was held open for nine minutes and 59 seconds after the 15 minutes had elapsed.  36 GOP members or 18% had not voted at the end of the 15 minutes compared to 13 Democrats or 6%.  The Article II vote was held immediately after the first.

This slow response to the vote suggests a lack of enthusiasm for voting no on the articles of impeachment.  This wasn't evident in the GOP SALT vote in the house the next day.  Actions do speak louder than words.  Former Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) has said that if the impeachment vote were a secret ballot in the Senate, at least 35 of his former GOP colleagues would vote to convict and remove him from office.  The GOP rank and file is another story.

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