GOP lawmaker 'strongly considering' impeachment: Trump is 'no longer qualified to hold that office'
Posted January 11, 2021 9:02 p.m. EST
Updated January 12, 2021 3:01 a.m. EST
CNN — Michigan GOP Rep. Peter Meijer said Monday evening he is "strongly considering" voting to impeach President Donald Trump following last week's riot at the US Capitol, assessing that the President is "no longer qualified to hold that office."
"I would prefer that we have a more fulsome investigation into what happened. Most of what I know about January 6 came either from personal experience or from Twitter. But at the end of the day, I think it is obvious that the President is no longer qualified to hold that office," Meijer told CNN's Erin Burnett on "Out Front."
Pressed on whether he'd made a definitive decision on impeachment, Meijer maintained that he will "wait to see the additional evidence presented, but again, this is something we're strongly considering."
His pointed comments came the same day Democrats formally introduced their impeachment resolution, charging Trump with "incitement of insurrection" as they race toward making him the first president in history to be impeached twice. The chamber will vote on the resolution Wednesday.
While some GOP lawmakers have called on Trump to resign -- notably Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania -- Meijer's public position is a notable break from the majority of House Republicans who are urging Democrats not to pursue impeachment, arguing such a move would be divisive.
Instead, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, in a letter to GOP colleagues, listed four potential responses to the January 6 attack. McCarthy, citing feedback from members, floated the possibility of "a resolution of censure under the rules of the House," as well as a bipartisan commission to investigate riots, according to the letter. He did not specify who would be censured.
But Meijer -- who replaced Justin Amash, the Republican-turned-independent former congressman who supported Trump's first impeachment -- said Monday Trump's response to the Capitol breach amounted to an "abject failure of leadership" and that while some colleagues have told him they are concerned about the timing of the impeachment process, he hasn't heard anyone "arguing the merits."
Drawing on his personal experience as an Iraq war veteran, Meijer added that he's "deeply" worried about more violence in the coming weeks as the country grapples with "a vacuum of leadership."
"Right now we just have silence. That's incredibly worrisome," he said. "I'm very worried about the violence not only that's occurred already which was horrific, it could have been far worse, but also I go forward with the expectation there will be more violence."