Earlier this week, ten Republican congressmen broke ranks to impeach Donald Trump for inciting thousands of his diehard followers to storm the Capitol on January 6 in a desperate bid to stop the certification of Trump’s defeat by Joe Biden. While it’s no surprise that this caused a lot of outraged howling on the GOP side, it’s indisputable that the most unhinged remarks came from evangelist Franklin Graham.
In an unhinged Facebook post on Thursday night, Graham wailed that no Republican had any business voting to impeach Trump “after all that he has done for our country.” He mused that they turned on Trump after being promised “thirty pieces of silver” by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi–a not-so-veiled reference to how Judas betrayed Jesus after being paid thirty pieces of silver.
These remarks would be callous in and of themselves, but are especially so considering that the thugs who raided the Capitol bludgeoned a Capitol Police officer to death, had every intention of abducting and assassinating Senators and Congressmen, and came within an eyelash of getting to Vice President Mike Pence. So it should come as no surprise that Graham has been pummeled on social media.
As of this writing, Graham has yet to respond. But before he opens his mouth again, he might do well to have a chat with one of the ten Republicans who voted to impeach, Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington. She represents the state’s 3rd District, covering most of the southwestern quadrant of the state, including the Washington side of the Portland area.
Herrera Beutler is a moderate Republican in the mold of a number of prominent Pacific Northwest Republicans from west of the Cascades, like Dan Evans, Bob Packwood, and Mark Hatfield. It’s allowed her to build up a reservoir of support in one of the few districts in the country that isn’t really safe for either party. In the last six elections, the largest margin of victory for either party was Trump’s seven-point win in 2016. He only won it by four in the last election. In a district this swingy, it came as no surprise that Herrera Beutler was rather cool toward Trump’s claims that there was indisputable evidence of election fraud.
On Tuesday, just hours before the impeachment debate, Herrera Beutler became the fourth Republican to support impeaching Trump for “incitement of insurrection.”
Herrera Beutler placed blame for the riot squarely on Trump, and also upbraided him for not making any effort to stop it. Apparently she knew full well that her decision to impeach her party’s standardbearer wouldn’t play well with her base. She couched her decision on what she sees as traditional Republican ideals–and those ideals led her to conclude that Trump “acted against his oath of office” and thus warranted impeachment.
When Herrera Beutler spoke during the impeachment debate the following day, she couched her vote as standing up for truth. Watch here; she took the floor shortly after fellow Washington Republican Dan Newhouse also announced he would vote to impeach Trump.
Apparently that wasn’t enough to stem the inevitable hackles. For instance, the Clark County Republican Women, based in Herrera Beutler’s home county, told Herrera Beutler that it would find and fund a more conservative challenger in 2022. CCRW,. which claims to be the largest Republican women’s club in the state, condemned Herrera Beutler for daring to “betray a sitting Republican President,” and saw her vote as “a personal affront to the 74 million Americans who voted for our President.”
In response to this and other cries of outrage, Herrera Beutler took to Twitter on Thursday night to explain her vote further.
She recapped some of Trump’s incendiary tweets, including calls for those attending the now-infamous rally at the Ellipse to “fight like hell,” “fight much harder,” and claiming that “very different rules” apply in cases of election fraud. She noted that a number of the rallygoers took Trump at his word.
She then argued that Trump poured gasoline on what had become an inferno at the Capitol by attacking Pence for not summarily throwing out the votes in states where Trump lost narrowly.
Herrera Beutler had been particularly angered that Trump cared more about his own political fate than doing his job. She reiterated her displeasure on Twitter.
She was equally angered that Trump made the poorest show of trying to call the mob off.
Later on Friday, Herrera Beutler asked her followers if they believed Trump had a duty to stop some of the more grisly moments from the riot.
To Herrera Beutler’s mind, the indisputable answer to that question was yes, as she reminded her followers of Trump’s oath of office.
To Herrera Beutler’s mind, the mob was attacking the Constitution itself by attacking the certification of the electoral votes–and it was indisputable that Trump’s failure to stop that attack amounted to a high crime.
Hererra Beutler’s choice of words was deliberate. She believed that even in the best-case scenario, it was indisputable that Trump was derelict of his duties in a way that a president cannot ever be. At worst, he stirred up the mob into a direct attack on the Constitution he swore to uphold.
Graham would do well to read this thread from Herrera Beutler. This is not the act of someone who sold her vote. This is the act of someone who understands her oath of office. That’s far more than can be said for the president whom Graham has effectively put on the same pedestal as Jesus.
- Arizona Wingnut Wants Women To Do Hard Time For Abortion - January 27, 2021
- Congresswoman Wails About Pronouns, But Is Okay With Lying About Election - January 23, 2021
- GOP Congresswoman: It’s ‘Indisputable’ Trump Needed To Be Impeached - January 17, 2021
- ‘Prophetic’ Writer: God Allowed Attack On Capitol To Rebuke Democrats - January 14, 2021
- Trump Lawyer: You Can’t Have ‘Smooth Transition’ If Trump Is Pushed Out - January 10, 2021
- Fundies Want Proof Biden Won Even After Trump Tried To Steal Georgia - January 4, 2021
- Trumpkin Lawyer Thinks VP Pence ‘Will NEVER Certify A Lie’ - December 30, 2020
- Trumpkin Pastor: Accept Trump As God’s ‘Key Instrument,’ Or Shut Up - December 19, 2020
- Trumpian preachers: Evangelical Prophets or Evangelical Prevaricators? - December 17, 2020
- Matt Gaetz: Only A ‘Partisan Hack’ Accepts That Trump Lost - December 12, 2020