Group of veterans call on lawmakers to support impeachment, 'put country over politics'

A group of veterans are meeting with congressional lawmakers on Capitol Hill on Tuesday and Wednesday, calling for them to “put country over politics” and support impeachment. 

Defend American Democracy, a coalition of veterans and groups focused on national security, are talking with Republicans and moderate Democrats to push them to support impeachment, directly after the House Democrats released two articles of impeachment Tuesday morning.  

Alex Babcock, an Army veteran from Sanford, Fla., said in an interview that the group is meeting with lawmakers from purple districts and states that they expect to be “convincible,” who could vote either way in the impeachment proceedings. 

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“We feel like they may be more apt to listen to a message that resonates, that might sway them away from their traditional party line, which is just back the president, no matter what,” Babcock said. “We're appealing to their values as individual leaders to think for themselves and to embrace our perspective.”

The veterans had scheduled Tuesday meetings with Rep. David SchweikertDavid SchweikertCampaigns face attack ad dilemma amid coronavirus crisis Hispanic Caucus campaign arm unveils non-Hispanic endorsements Carper staffer tests positive in Delaware MORE (R-Ariz.) and Rep. Will HurdWilliam Ballard HurdJulián Castro launches PAC to support progressive candidates The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump visits a ventilator plant in a battleground state The Hill to interview Mnuchin today and many other speakers MORE (R-Texas) along with the staff of Sen. Pat ToomeyPatrick (Pat) Joseph ToomeyGOP senators push for quick, partial reopening of economy NSA improperly collected US phone records in October, new documents show Overnight Defense: Pick for South Korean envoy splits with Trump on nuclear threat | McCain blasts move to suspend Korean military exercises | White House defends Trump salute of North Korean general MORE (R-Pa.), Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerSenate Republicans urge Trump to tone down rhetoric on protests The Hill's Campaign Report: Minneapolis protests rock the nation McConnell: Next coronavirus bill will be final COVID-19 package MORE (R-Colo.), Sen. Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Trump administration gives renewables more time to take advantage of tax credits | House Republicans introduce bill to speed mining projects for critical minerals | Watchdog faults EPA communications in contamination of NC river Trump administration gives renewables more time to take advantage of tax credits Tillis campaign releases first general election TV ad emphasizing 'humble' roots MORE (R-N.C.), Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioRubio: Protesters outside White House 'deliberately stayed to trigger police action' This week: Senate reconvenes as protests roil nation amid pandemic Trump asserts his power over Republicans MORE (R-Fla.) and Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsTrump expected to visit Maine despite governor's concerns Democrats gear up to hit GOP senators on DACA OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Trump administration gives renewables more time to take advantage of tax credits | House Republicans introduce bill to speed mining projects for critical minerals | Watchdog faults EPA communications in contamination of NC river MORE (R-Maine), according to a schedule obtained by The Hill. 

They are working on meeting with Rep. Jared Golden (D-Maine), Sen. Martha McSallyMartha Elizabeth McSallyThe Hill's Campaign Report: Minneapolis protests rock the nation Democrats gear up to hit GOP senators on DACA Pence names new press secretary MORE (R-Ariz.), Rep. Ann WagnerAnn Louise WagnerTrump, GOP go all-in on anti-China strategy House passes massive T coronavirus relief package Bottom line MORE (R-Mo.) and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) or their staffs.

Babcock said veterans have a “critical role in democracy,” as people “may be more apt to listen” to their perspective. He also seeks to counter the narrative that all military veterans back the president.

“We're doing this because we truly believe in this, and we believe in our country, which is why we signed up in the first place,” he said.

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Tashandra Poullard, a Navy veteran from Houston, said she volunteered to speak to lawmakers because she does not want to witness foreign interference in the U.S. election process. 

“And the last thing I want is for my legacy to be blemished by serving people who did not understand nor respect the Constitution of the United States of America,” she said. 

She wants to ask Republican lawmakers particularly, “Is it more important to protect and defend the Constitution or protect one individual that feels that they are above the law?”

Defend American Democracy recently funded a seven-figure ad campaign, asking constituents to call at least 14 Republican House members across 10 states to tell them to “put country over politics” and back impeachment.

House Democrats announced two articles of impeachment against the president Tuesday morning: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. The House Judiciary Committee said a House vote on impeachment could come as early as next week.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpSessions accepts 'Fox News Sunday' invitation to debate, Tuberville declines Priest among those police cleared from St. John's Church patio for Trump visit Trump criticizes CNN on split-screen audio of Rose Garden address, protesters clashing with police MORE faces possible impeachment after a complaint from a whistleblower informed Congress that the president asked the Ukrainian president to investigate former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenPresidents and 'presidents' Biden to blast Trump's church photo op in Philadelphia speech Rudy Giuliani calls on Cuomo to remove Bill de Blasio MORE, shortly after withholding military aid from the country. 

Since the end of September, House Democrats have held closed-door and public hearings with former and current Trump officials who had knowledge on the White House’s relationship with Ukraine.