It's official: The U.S. House of Representatives has voted to impeach President Donald Trump for a second time.
This one's for inciting violence against the government at a rally in Washington, D.C. last week.
Ten Republicans joined House Democrats to vote in favor of impeachment, bringing the vote total to 232 in favor and 197 against. But Republican representatives from Arizona were not among those yes votes.
All four Republicans in Arizona's congressional delegation voted against impeachment, while the state's five Democratic representatives voted for it, making for a party-line split on the vote here in Arizona.
In statements explaining their votes, Republican Representatives Debbie Lesko (8th District – Surprise) and David Schweikert (6th District – Scottsdale) both cited the need for national unity and described the impeachment effort as divisive.
Lesko's statement didn't even mention last week's riot at the Capitol.
"At a time when our country desperately needs to move forward in pursuit of unity, it is deeply concerning that my Democratic colleagues have chosen to impeach a president with just seven days left in office. Additionally, the lack of deliberation on this impeachment is highly alarming," she said. "This move by the House is dangerous and has far reaching implications for the future of our nation.”
Similarly, Schweikert said that the impeachment proceedings "divides Congress even further."
"After the despicable events of January 6th, it is more important than ever that the United States Congress do the work of the people and direct our focus entirely on conquering the ongoing issues our great nation is facing. Today's vote fails to do that," he said. "It divides Congress even further at a time when we should be setting an example for the nation by showing we can put politics aside and put the country first. I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to focus their time and effort on finding common ground, and working together to find real solutions to our nation's most pressing issues."
Notably, Schweikert joined his Republican colleagues in voting against impeachment after being the sole Arizona Republican to vote against an objection to the state's election results that was filed by his colleague, Republican Congressmen Paul Gosar (4th District – Prescott), last week on the day the Capitol was breached by the mob. (Schweikert did, however, vote in favor of the objection to Pennsylvania's election results.)
The other two Republican votes against impeachment, Congressmen Paul Gosar (4th District – Prescott) and Andy Biggs (5th District – Mesa) aren't surprising: The two men are some of the president's staunchest supporters in Congress. Congressmen Gosar has adamantly reiterated Trump's baseless claims that the election was stolen from him and expressed sympathy for the rioters at the Capitol on social media.
Democratic Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva (3rd District – Yuma) criticized Republicans' calls for unity in a statement posted on Twitter.
"I will vote to impeach Trump for a second time because calls of ‘unity’ will not stop the treacherous situations Trump continues to encourage," he wrote. "Trump and his congressional enablers must be held accountable for the carnage and terror they released on our nation last week."
I will vote to impeach Trump for a second time because calls of ‘unity’ will not stop the treacherous situations Trump continues to encourage.— Raul M. Grijalva (@RepRaulGrijalva) January 13, 2021
Trump and his congressional enablers must be held accountable for the carnage and terror they released on our nation last week. https://t.co/oFHU9n7xUD
The impeachment vote sets up a trial in the Senate, but it is still unclear when the trial will begin.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.