Over the past several days, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) has been spearheading a movement to impeach President Donald Trump.
However, Waters hasn’t always been an advocate of the use of the impeachment powers.
On December 18, 1998 during the debate of the articles of impeachment of then-President Bill Clinton on the House floor, Waters castigated her Republican colleagues.
She called the effort “a Republican coup d’etat” that was driven by “raw, unmasked, unbridled hatred and meanness.” She also said Clinton’s impeachment was an “unapologetic disregard for the voice of the people.”
Transcript as follows:
Mr. Speaker and members, how must our American soldiers feel to have their commander-in-chief under attack while they are engaged in battle? They have the right to feel betrayed and undermined. Today, we are here in the people’s House debating the partisan impeachment of the president of the United States of America, while the commander-in-chief is managing a crisis and asking world leaders for support. This is, indeed, a Republican coup d’etat.
Mr. Speaker and members, Americans all, the Republicans will couch this extremist, radical anarchy in pious language which distorts the Constitution and the rule of law.
Bill and Hillary Clinton are the real targets, and the Republicans are the vehicles being used by the right-wing Christian Coalition extremists to direct and control our culture.
The rule of law has been violated in denying the president notice of charges, by the abuse of power in the collecting of so-called “evidence” and the denial of the presumption of innocence.
President Clinton is not guilty of the trumped up charges presented in these four articles of impeachment. Yes, Bill Clinton is guilty of certain indiscretions in his private life. However, he did not commit high crimes and misdemeanors.
Rather, the president is guilty of being a populous leader who opened up government and access to the poor, to minorities, to women and to the working class.
President Bill Clinton is guilty of not being owned by the good old Southern boys or the good old Eastern establishment.
President Clinton is guilty of being smart enough to outmaneuver the Republicans in the budget negotiations, electoral politics and the development and implementation of the people’s agenda.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am an African-American woman. I’m accustomed to having to fight and struggle for fairness and justice.
Ken Starr, I know and recognize abuse of power when I see it. You are guilty.
However, I am greatly disappointed in the raw, unmasked, unbridled hatred and meanness that drives this impeachment coups d’etat, this unapologetic disregard for the voice of the people.
My Republican friends, what you do here today will long be remembered and recorded in history as one of the most despicable actions ever taken by the Congress of the United States of America.
I dare the Republicans of this House to allow themselves to move just one inch, and give me and my colleagues the opportunity to vote for an alternative. I dare you to be fair. I dare you to allow us to vote for censure.
I yield back the balance of my time.
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