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Editorial: Oh so now Eric Schmitt and Josh Hawley are concerned about impeachment, Constitution?

The Kansas City Star Editorial Board, The Kansas City Star on

Published in Op Eds

Now we know: Sen. Eric Schmitt isn’t really a “half-a-loaf” guy.

The Missouri Republican on Tuesday scuttled any chance that Republicans would get to debate the articles of impeachment against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas — so Democrats went ahead and dismissed the charges outright.

Schmitt’s problem? Democrats wouldn’t allow a full trial for Mayorkas. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer proposed allowing time for debate, which would have let Republicans make their case against the secretary — all without calling witnesses or going through the usual drawn-out process of a full Senate trial — but Schmitt wasn’t interested in half-measures.

“The American people deserve a full impeachment trial of Sec. Mayorkas,” Schmitt wrote in a social media post. “I will not assist Senator Schumer in setting our Constitution ablaze and bulldozing 200 years of precedent.”

Maybe. But Schumer had a pretty good precedent of his own: Impeachments are for high crimes and misdemeanors. That’s what the Constitution actually says. And the Republican case against Mayorkas boils down to this: He’s not executing America’s immigration policy the way the GOP would like.

Not a crime. Not a misdemeanor. A difference.

“The dangerous precedent (was) not the one the Republicans were talking about, but the one of letting impeachment take the place of policy disagreements,” Schumer said.

Exactly.

 

One of the more interesting things to come out of Wednesday’s abbreviated debate about Mayorkas, though, was to witness members of the Kansas-Missouri Insurrection Caucus — the folks who tried to help Donald Trump overturn the 2020 election — shed copious crocodile tears about the utter preciousness of impeachment, about the deep importance of the Constitution.

“Senate Democrats have rejected the Constitution and jeopardizes the checks and balances Congress has over the Executive Branch,” Sen. Roger Marshall, the Kansas Republican, said in his own statement.

Marshall, you’ll recall, voted against certifying Joe Biden’s election victory on Jan. 6 — and then voted against Trump’s impeachment for inciting the insurrection.

“After impeaching Donald Trump twice in under two years, the Dems today decided they don’t like impeachment after all — and voted to do away with it. Always principled,” Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri added.

Hawley voted against Donald Trump’s two impeachments. And we know how he spent Jan. 6.

Given all that history, the rage expressed Wednesday by Schmitt, Marshall and Hawley represents a fair amount of chutzpah. Or, to put it more bluntly: The utter nerve of those guys.

___


©2024 The Kansas City Star. Visit at kansascity.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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