‘At the end of the day I think the speaker owes an apology to this nation, and I think it’s even questioned whether she should stay in her job…’
(Ben Sellers, Liberty Headlines) House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and other top GOP leaders in the House of Representatives issued a fiery rebuke to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. and her party during a weekly press conference on Wednesday.
McCarthy said Pelosi’s declaration Tuesday that she planned to initiate impeachment hearings against President Donald Trump represented “a dark day for the congress, for the actions of this speaker.”
Casting all political differences aside, he said he was speaking simply “as an American that’s disgusted” by the degradation of the legislative body to serve a singular partisan agenda of undoing the 2016 election results.
“I’m not worried about energizing the Trump base,” he said in response to a reporter’s question. “I’m worried about what it’s doing to the fabric of America… I’m worried about what is it showing to the rest of the world.”
McCarthy said Pelosi’s actions, in opening an impeachment probe with no solid evidence or crime to back it, undermined the rule of law and may have permanently marred the role of the speakership.
“What I’m concerned now is the speaker of the House changed the course of that office for the history of this country,” he said, “that a body that brings legislation, a body that represents the rule of law, could change the course of what it actually means.”
McCarthy had not read the transcript of the July conversation between Trump and Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy, which was also released Tuesday morning by the White House.
However, he said forcing Trump to disclose his private conversation with a world leader set a frightening precedent with alarming national security implications.
McCarthy questioned “how honest a conversation they are gonna have if they’re fearful that their transcripts are gonna” be made public.
“It changes a whole different standard for us,” he said. “And—you know what—in the end, it will make the country less safe by the actions of this speaker.”
Nonetheless, McCarthy said he was confident that the transcript—and the developments soon to unfold surrounding the anonymous whistle-blower who brought concerns to the intelligence community inspector general based on a second-hand account of the conversation—ultimately would fall well short of the standard for impeachment, as have Democrats’ past efforts.
“At the end of the day I think the speaker owes an apology to this nation,” he said, “and I think it’s even questioned whether she should stay in her job.”
Also speaking at the press conference were Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, Doug Collins of Georgia, Jim Jordan of Ohio and Steve Scalise of Louisiana.
They largely echoed earlier statements criticizing the House Democrats for their outrageous power play.
Cheney noted that Pelosi’s choice of days to reverse her course on impeachment—as Trump was addressing the United Nations amid precarious foreign policy discussions—seemed suspicious.
“One can only guess that she did it because she was intentionally trying to weaken the president, trying to weaken his hand,” she said.
Scalise and others criticized the fact that the relentless pursuit of impeachment had derailed hope of a bipartisan agenda, including passage of a North American trade deal, the USMCA, which had the potential to add 160,000 new jobs into the economy.
He also charged Democrats with poisoning the well for a bill lowering prescription drug costs and failing to address much needed border security.
Collins, the ranking minority member of the House Judiciary Committee, said that Pelosi’s loss of control within her own party “leads to a disfunction on our committees” and showed utter disrespect for the rules of order within Congress.
“The Democrats now have frankly fallen to a disgraceful status,” he said.