Republican U.S. Rep. Peter Meijer votes to impeach President Donald J. Trump

Jan 13, 2021

U.S. Rep. Peter Meijer, (R-Grand Rapids, MI-3)
Credit Peter Meijer campaign

U.S. Rep. Peter Meijer (R-Grand Rapids, MI-3) has issued this statement on Impeachment: 

We saw profiles in courage during the assault on the Capitol. Police officers, badly outnumbered, putting their lives on the line to save others. Members of Congress barricading doors and caring for colleagues. A Vice President who fearlessly remained in the Capitol and refused to bow to the mob.

There was no such courage from our President who betrayed and misled millions with claims of a “stolen election” and encouraged loyalists that “if you don’t fight like hell you’re not going to have a country any more.” The one man who could have restored order, prevented the deaths of five Americans including a Capitol Police officer, and avoided the desecration of our Capitol shrank from leadership when our country needed it most.

As gallows were erected on Capitol grounds and members of the mob chanted “Hang Mike Pence,” the President assailed the Vice President regarding the certification vote, saying he “didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our country and our constitution.” The President also released a video expressing his admiration for those who stormed the Capitol while Congress was still under attack.

It weighs on me that Gerald Ford held this seat for 25 years before he was elevated to the Presidency. President Ford’s pardon of Richard Nixon was a necessary step to move the nation past the wounds of Watergate, but it followed Nixon’s resignation and acceptance of responsibility. Since last week, the President has accepted no responsibility for the violence his rhetoric and actions inspired.

This vote is not a victory. It isn’t a victory for my party, and it isn’t the victory the Democrats might think it is. I'm not sure it is a victory for our country. But it is a call to action for us to reflect on these events and seek ways to correct them. I have wrestled with the division this vote will cause.

I wrestled with the precedent it will establish and I have concerns with due process. I have wrestled with whether impeachment, an inherently political process, is a meaningful mechanism of accountability for the seriousness of the President's actions.

But today, my job is to apply my best judgment to the article of impeachment that is on the floor of the US Congress. With the facts at hand, I believe the article of impeachment to be accurate. The President betrayed his oath of office by seeking to undermine our constitutional process, and he bears responsibility for inciting the violent acts of insurrection last week. With a heavy heart, I will vote to impeach President Donald J. Trump.