The South Carolina Republican Party voted to censure considered one of its personal members on Saturday, Representative Tom Rice, for his vote to question former President Donald Trump earlier this month.
The symbolic transfer affords a proper criticism of Rice’s determination to question Trump for a second time over his position in inciting a violent attacked on the U.S. Capitol on January 6.
The state GOP mentioned Rice’s impeachment vote “betrayed” his social gathering’s constituents by falling according to “unprincipled Leftists.”
“In the first and most consequential vote of the new session, Mr. Rice sided with (Democratic House Speaker) Nancy Pelosi and the unprincipled Leftists by voting to impeach the President, betraying the Republican voters that supported Mr. Rice enthusiastically during the last two election cycles,” the censure decision mentioned, in response to The Post and Courier.
Rice, a Myrtle Beach Republican beginning his fifth time period in Congress, has additionally obtained some backlash immediately from constituents in his district. In his first telephone city corridor after voting to question Trump, a voter from his district referred to as the choice “inexcusable.”
“Next time around, I don’t think you’re going to get elected,” mentioned the constituent, in response to CBS News. “I’m not happy with you. And I certainly won’t vote for you again. So if you can figure out some way to redeem yourself, I’m all ears.”
Drew McKissick, the chairman of the South Carolina GOP, mentioned that Saturday’s censure decision was meant to indicate that the social gathering “wholeheartedly disagrees” with Rice’s determination.
“Congressman Rice’s vote unfortunately played right into the Democrats‘ game, and the people in his district, and ultimately our State Executive Committee, wanted him to know they wholeheartedly disagree with his decision,” he mentioned in a press release.
The measure was in the end accredited by a voice vote, with 43 members in favor of the decision, zero in opposition to it and two abstaining, The Post and Courier reported.
In response to the vote, Rice defended his place to question Trump and criticized the GOP for “cowering” earlier than the previous president.
“I think the South Carolina Republican Party has forgotten its own creed that says ‘I will cower before no man save my God.’ It seems to me they are cowering before Donald Trump,” Rice advised The Post and Courier.
“If the president who did what Donald Trump did that day and sent a mob to stall Congress and the result was an attack on the legislative branch of the United States Government, that is a clear violation of the constitution,” he continued. “It’s absolutely a high crime or misdemeanor. I don’t care if the president that does that is Republican or a Democrat, I’m voting for impeachment.”
In an interview with ABC 15 revealed on January 26, Rice added that “it would have been so easy” to go together with fellow Republicans and vote in opposition to Trump’s impeachment, however that he as an alternative selected to “defend the constitution.”
“I don’t take an oath to Donald Trump. I don’t take an oath to the Republican Party. I take an oath to defend our Constitution and that’s what I will do,” he mentioned.
Though Saturday’s censure decision doesn’t include any additional punishments, the transfer symbolizes a constant divide between Trump loyalists and people who stand in opposition to him.
The final time the South Carolina GOP voted to censure an elected official came to visit 10 years in the past, after they accredited one for then-governor Mark Sanford after he admitted to touring to Argentina for an extramarital affair, The Post and Courier reported.
But South Carolina shouldn’t be the one state to help reprimanding officers who break up with Trump.
Last week, the Arizona GOP voted in favor of comparable resolutions for former U.S. Senator Jeff Flake and Cindy McCain, the widow of the late longtime U.S. Senator John McCain, for criticizing Trump.
Wyoming Representative Liz Cheney, the No. 3 House Republican, has additionally confronted broad blowback in her state over her vote to question Trump, and Republicans in Massachusetts are looking for to censure Governor Charlie Baker for his help in impeaching the previous president.
Rice’s determination to vote for impeachment in the end got here as a shock to state Republicans, on account of his historical past of supporting Trump.
“This is the kind of thing you’ve come to expect from Nancy Pelosi and the Democrat leadership, but it was really disappointing to see any Republicans approve of it, participate in it in any shape, form or fashion, and I think it plays into the Democrats’ game,” McKissick mentioned, in response to The Post and Courier.
Newsweek reached out Rice’s workplace for added remark. The South Carolina GOP didn’t supply a remark past its official assertion.