Seven of the ten Republicans who voted in January to impeach former President Donald Trump face primary challenges, according to Newsweek.
“Ten Republicans joined Democrats in impeaching Trump a historic second time, a move that was quickly met with condemnation back in their home states,” the report said.
Chris Mathys, a former city council member in Fresno, California, told the outlet that, after his last election he had initially chosen not to seek office again.
However, “the vote by Congressman [David] Valadao to impeach President Trump with no witnesses, evidence, or without allowing any defense was too much for me to stay on the sidelines,” he explained.
The Newsweek article continued:
While Trump isn’t widely popular in Valadao’s district, he is in Wyoming, where he won with 70 percent of the votes in 2020, presenting a potential problem for Representative Liz Cheney [R-WY]. The third-highest ranking Republican in the House wasn’t shy about her critiques of Trump and her vote to impeach him lit the fire of opposition. State Senator Richard Bouchard, a Republican gunning for her seat, called her vote proof of how “out-of-touch” she is with Wyoming.
Challengers have also come out against Representatives Adam Kinzinger [R-IL], Dan Newhouse [R-WA] and Anthony Gonzalez [R-OH]. Another Republican has created an exploratory committee in a potential bid for Representative Tom Rice’s [R-SC] seat and local GOP organizations have vowed to recruit someone to go after Representative Jaime Herrera Buetler’s [R-WA] spot in Congress.
In a Facebook post on January 14, Rev. Franklin Graham criticized the ten GOP lawmakers who sided with Democrats on the second impeachment vote.
“Shame, shame on the ten Republicans who joined with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats in impeaching President Trump yesterday. After all that he has done for our country, you would turn your back and betray him so quickly?” he wrote.
Graham then listed the former president’s many accomplishments, noting that “He was also the most pro-life president we have ever had.”
Meanwhile, an increasing number of Republican senators are saying they oppose an impeachment trial, the Associated Press (AP) reported on January 24.
“I think the trial is stupid; I think it’s counterproductive,” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) commented, adding that “the first chance I get to vote to end this trial, I’ll do it” because he thinks it would be a bad move for the country.