Cassidy: It was clear that Trump ‘wished that lawmakers be intimidated’
Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) on Sunday discussed his decision to join six other GOP colleagues in voting to impeach former President Trump, making it the most bipartisan impeachment vote in U.S. history.
Appearing on ABC’s “This Week,” Cassidy explained to host George Stephanopoulos that his decision came down to his belief that Trump attempted to prevent a peaceful transfer of power to President Biden.
“It was clear that he wished that lawmakers be intimidated,” Cassidy said, referring to the rally that Trump appeared at before the deadly Capitol breach on Jan. 6.
NEW: GOP Sen. Bill Cassidy, one of seven Senate Republicans who voted to convict former Pres. Trump in his second impeachment trial, explains his decision: “It was clear that he wished that lawmakers be intimidated.” https://t.co/DZBFQh5kXW pic.twitter.com/tkJy8Mp4g0
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) February 14, 2021
“And even after he knew there was violence taking place, he continued to basically sanction the mob being there. And not until later that he actually asked them to leave,” Cassidy continued. “All of that points to a motive and a method and that is wrong. He should be held accountable.”
Cassidy added that he believed Trump’s influence in the Republican Party is waning.
“The Republican Party is more than just one person,” he added.
Cassidy has been condemned by members of the Louisiana GOP for his vote to impeach Trump. The Republican Party of Louisiana voted to censure him on Saturday. Stephanopoulos noted that a Louisiana GOP official accused Cassidy of no longer representing the majority of people in Louisiana.
“I have the privilege of having the facts before me, and being able to spend several days deeply going into those facts,” Cassidy responded. “People want to trust. They want to trust their leaders, they want people to be held accountable. Now we are holding — I’m attempting to hold President Trump accountable, and that is the trust I have from the people that elected me. And I am very confident that as time passes, people will move to that position.”
Fellow Republican Sens. Richard Burr (N.C.), Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Mitt Romney (Utah), Ben Sasse (Neb.) and Pat Toomey (Pa.) also voted to convict Trump on a single article of impeachment. During Trump’s first impeachment trial, Romney was the sole GOP senator to break with his party to vote to convict Trump.
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