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Connecticut's Delegation Votes To Impeach President Donald Trump

House Television via AP
House Judiciary Committee ranking member Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., speaks as the House of Representatives debates the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump at the Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2019.

All five of Connecticut’s representatives in the U.S. House voted to impeach Donald Trump in an historic session Wednesday. Only one, the 4th District’s Jim Himes, gave remarks on the floor before the vote.

Himes, who has been closely involved in the impeachment process as a key member of the House Intelligence Committee, said it is time to hold the president to account.

“What makes this impeachment essential is that the president's abuse of power has not stopped,” Himes told his colleagues in the chamber. “He continues to urge foreign interference in our democracy, beseeching China to investigate the Bidens, sending Rudy Giuliani overseas to chase Russian conspiracy theories.”

After the vote, other members of the delegation issued statements of support. 

The 1st District’s John Larson acknowledged that some people feel strongly against impeachment, but he said that to do nothing would condone behavior that disregards the constitution.

“As we vote today, I think it is instructive that Americans reflect on how we got to this point,” said Larson. “The President... directly solicited a foreign government to gather information on his political opponent. He then further sought to promote a false narrative that it was Ukraine, and not Russia, who interfered with the elections in 2016. With the ability to correct the record, clear his name, or offer explanation for his actions, he chose instead to obstruct a co-equal branch of government from performing its Constitutional responsibilities of oversight and review.”

Rosa DeLauro, who represents the 3rd District, said that the facts of the case against President Trump were “indisputable.”

“Today, the House of Representatives upheld its duty to protect the Constitution of the United States,” she said in her statement. “Our founders set up a system of checks and balances, separation of powers, and rule of law so that no person would be above the law. That includes the President of the United States. The Constitutional recourse for ‘treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors’ is clear: impeachment. It is a heavy price—intended only for matters of grave consequence to our republic.”

Freshman member for the 5th District, Jahana Hayes, said she did not come to Congress to impeach a president, but to make a difference.

“As the investigation proceeded, I deliberately chose not to comment without having had a chance to review all the evidence and study the full articles as drafted,” she said in a statement before the vote.

“While some may argue these actions do not merit impeachment, to do nothing and normalize this behavior would be a dereliction of my oath of office. This is a moment where I must lead, and I will vote yes,” she went on.

Joe Courtney, who represents the 2nd District, issued a video statement to his constituents in the afternoon before the vote, to explain why he had decided to support the two articles of impeachment. He said he had been slow to support the entire process.

“At some point you cannot look the other way,” he said, “when actions are being taken which really go the heart of all of us, in terms of the oath that we take.”

He said he recognizes that some in his district will be frustrated and disappointed by his decision. 

“This is not done for my own political goals or any agenda,” he said. “What I’m doing is my best in terms of following my conscience.”

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