As the country reels from last week’s attack on the U.S. Capitol, liberals accused a Republican congressman of encouraging further violence during Wednesday’s impeachment debate — but it turned out he was just quoting the top House Democrat’s past statements.
The moment: Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas took to the floor to oppose the article of impeachment Democrats brought against President Donald Trump for allegedly inciting the January 6 riot at the Capitol in Washington, D.C.
- “Here’s a quote: ‘I just don’t even know why there aren’t more — why there aren’t uprisings all over the country and maybe there will be,'” said Gohmert,
- “Or, ‘Sadly, the domestic enemies of our voting system and honoring our Constitution are right at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue with their allies in Congress,'” he added, making reference to an August 24 Pelosi interview. “We were called ‘enemies’ of the state. Those were all quotes from our speaker.”
- “Now, on our side, we didn’t take those to be impeachable because we didn’t believe she surely meant that,” the congressman said. “But by the Democrats taking this action, you’re telling me, ‘No, when we say those, we actually mean to incite violence.’ That’s what this action is saying.”
Outrage: Left-leaning Twitter users seized on the “uprisings” quote to accuse Gohmert, who recently brought a failed suit attempting to force Vice President Mike Pence to reject several states’ Electoral College votes, of pushing for more violence against the government.
- “Is Gohmer encouraging MORE “uprisings”??!? Did I hear that right??????????” tweeted CNN analyst Asha Rangappa on Wednesday.
Whoops: After conservatives noted that Gohmert was merely quoting the Democrat House Speaker’s words, a flurry of retractions and ameliorations followed.
What’s next? The article of impeachment passed with the support of every House Democrat and 10 House Republicans.
- Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has told Republicans he will not hold Trump’s impeachment trial before Congress is scheduled to reconvene on Jan. 19, but has not closed the door on voting to convict.