Republicans criticize Pelosi for gifting pens used to sign impeachment articles

Republicans criticize Pelosi for gifting pens used to sign impeachment articles
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Republicans are chastising Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiTrump congratulates Steve King challenger on GOP primary win The Hill's Morning Report - Protesters' defiance met with calls to listen Calls for police reform sparks divisions in Congress MORE (D-Calif.) for making gifts out of the pens she used to sign the two articles of impeachment against President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump says inviting Russia to G7 'a question of common sense' Pentagon chief does not support invoking Insurrection Act Dershowitz: Does President Trump have power to declare martial law? MORE.

On Wednesday, Pelosi signed the articles, which passed the House in December, before they were taken across the Capitol to the Senate. Pelosi handed out the special pens she used in a commemorative signing tradition that Trump has also participated in with various bills and executive orders.

Top GOP officials, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump congratulates Steve King challenger on GOP primary win The Hill's Morning Report - Protesters' defiance met with calls to listen Republicans turning against new round of ,200 rebate checks MORE (Ky.) and White House press secretary Stephanie GrishamStephanie GrishamPence names new press secretary McEnany: Prayer 'made a lot of difference' in 2016 election McEnany stamps her brand on White House press operation MORE, criticized the Speaker, saying giving out the “souvenir pens” undercut her claims that the impeachment process is "solemn and serious."

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“The Speaker distributed souvenir pens, souvenir pens to her own colleagues emblazoned with her golden signature that literally came in on silver platters,” McConnell said on the Senate floor.

The majority leader also tweeted out his disdain for Pelosi’s action on Thursday, calling it “the House’s partisan process distilled into one last perfect visual. Not solemn or serious. A transparently political exercise from beginning to end.”

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“She was so somber as she gave them away to people like prizes,” Grisham agreed.

House Republican Whip Steve ScaliseStephen (Steve) Joseph ScaliseTop GOP lawmakers invite Blue Dogs to meet with China Task Force Top GOP lawmakers invite Blue Dogs to meet with China Task Force over coronavirus probe House pays tribute to late Congressman Sam Johnson on the floor MORE (La.) tweeted out the CNN footage of Pelosi handing the pens to fellow Democrats, saying, “So much for ‘somber’ and ‘solemn.’”

Other GOP lawmakers including Reps. Mark MeadowsMark Randall MeadowsHouse Judiciary to hear whistleblowers on 'politicization' of Justice Dept under Trump How Trump cleared the park around the White House for church photo op Trump visits historic DC church after protesters cleared with tear gas MORE (N.C.) and Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarConservative lawmakers press Trump to suspend guest worker programs for a year Impeachment figure among those chosen for Facebook's new oversight board Cruz rebukes San Antonio City Council for denouncing 'Chinese virus' as hate speech MORE (Ariz.) also denounced Pelosi on social media.

Pelosi deputy chief of staff Drew Hammill said in a statement that impeachment is "tragic" but also "historic."

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"As the Speaker has said, it is tragic that the President’s attacks on our Constitution have brought our country to this point, but it is indisputably historic when the Constitution and its balance of power reasserts itself," Hammill.

"Today, the Government Accountability Office confirmed that the President’s actions were illegal abuses of power, and Republicans are complaining about pens," he added.

Hamill was referencing to the GAO report that found that the administration violated the law by withholding aid from Ukraine.

The lower chamber on Wednesday officially transferred the articles to the Senate for Trump’s trial after weeks of delay. Pelosi had withheld the articles from the Senate, saying she wanted details on the rules of the trial first.

The senators are scheduled to be sworn in for the trial by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts on Thursday afternoon, after the House impeachment managers read the articles to the upper chamber.

—Updated at 12:58 p.m.