‘This utter failure is inexcusable’: Republican Rep. Tom Rice of Myrtle Beach votes to impeach Trump

Politics

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WBTW) — Rep. Tom Rice, R-Myrtle Beach, has voted to impeach President Donald Trump, just a few days after the Congressman told News13 he did not support the move.

The vote came Wednesday afternoon, a week after a violent protest at the U.S. Capitol left a handful of people dead.

“Trump acted recklessly last Wednesday, but he only has nine days left in his term,” a statement given on Monday reads. “Let’s not stoke further division.”

Tom Rice released the following statement Wednesday after he changed his mind and voted to impeach the president:

“Under the strict definition of the law, I don’t know if the President’s speech last Wednesday morning amounted to incitement of a riot, but any reasonable person could see the potential for violence.”

“Once the violence began, when the Capitol was under siege, when the Capitol Police were being beaten and killed, and when the Vice President and the Congress were being locked down, the President was watching and tweeted about the Vice President’s lack of courage.”

“For hours while the riot continued, the President communicated only on Twitter and offered only weak requests for restraint.”

“I was on the floor of the House of Representatives when the rioters were beating on the door with tear gas, zip tie restraints, and pipe bombs in their possession. It is only by the grace of God and the blood of the Capitol Police that the death toll was not much, much higher.”

“It has been a week since so many were injured, the United States Capitol was ransacked, and six people were killed, including two police officers. Yet, the President has not addressed the nation to ask for calm. He has not visited the injured and grieving. He has not offered condolences. Yesterday in a press briefing at the border, he said his comments were ‘perfectly appropriate.'”

“I have backed this President through thick and thin for four years. I campaigned for him and voted for him twice. But, this utter failure is inexcusable.”

He was one of 10 House Republicans and 222 Democrats to vote in favor of impeachment. He was joined by Dan Newhouse (Washington), John Katko (New York), Jamie Herrera Beutler (Washington), Adam Kinzinger (Illinois), Fred Upton (Michigan), Liz Cheney (Wyoming), Peter Meijer (Michigan), Anthony Gonzalez (Ohio) and David Valadao (California).

You can click here to see News13’s Chris Spiker’s full interview with Rep. Rice a few hours the impeachment vote.

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