Smucker, Perry oppose impeachment, blast Democrats
U.S. Reps. Scott Perry and Lloyd Smucker on Wednesday lambasted House Democrats' successful push to impeach President Donald Trump.
The House voted 230-197 primarily along party lines Wednesday, Dec. 18, to impeach the president under the articles of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Trump is the third president in the country's history to be impeached.
Perry, a Carroll Township Republican, and Smucker, a Lancaster Republican, voted "no" on impeachment after they both spoke on the House floor. Both lawmakers have been vocal supporters of Trump throughout the impeachment hearings.
“These are the reckless and irresponsible acts of elitists in the swamp, and they undermine the fabric of our republic," Perry said of House Democrats while speaking on the House floor.
Smucker, who took the floor shortly after Perry, also took a turn to attack his Democratic colleagues.
"It’s clear that the facts never mattered to the House Democrats," Smucker said. "They never wanted to do work with the president and instead intended to fulfill their divisive, partisan agenda.”
House Democrats' impeachment efforts have focused on accusations that Trump sought to withhold military aid to Ukraine until that country's president announced it would investigate Hunter Biden, the son of Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden.
Trump has continuously claimed the call was "perfect" and that the Democrats' efforts are predicated on their inability to oust him in 2020. The president echoed those sentiments during a rally in Hershey, Dauphin County, on Dec. 10.
“(Trump) asked the Ukrainians to work with our attorney general,” Perry said. “The Ukrainians were already getting the military hardware, and they got the aid they desired.”
A vote to convict the president in the Senate is highly unlikely. A conviction in the upper chamber would require a two-thirds majority, and Republicans hold firm control.
Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., has supported the House inquiry and called for Trump's impeachment. However, he has so far refused to commit on a vote on whether to convict.
"Every senator will swear an oath to hear evidence as an impartial juror, and we owe it to the American people to fairly consider all available information related to these articles of impeachment," Casey said in a Wednesday statement.
Some GOP senators have taken heat for not taking a firm stance on a possible vote to convict. Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, for example, has taken a hit in the polls and roused anger among some of her constituents.
Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa. said in a statement that the House impeachment was the "culmination of a highly partisan process," through which Democrats achieved their goal of impeaching Trump. The Senate trial, Toomey said, should be less partisan and afford more rights to Trump through his attorneys.
“In a Senate trial, House impeachment managers should be permitted to make their case, and the president’s lawyers should be able to make their defense," Toomey said.
— Logan Hullinger can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter at @LoganHullYD.