Empower Wisconsin | Dec. 19, 2019
By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — U.S. Rep. Ron Kind broke his silence Wednesday evening, standing with the rest of his Trump-hating fellow Democrats in casting his vote for both articles of impeachment.
The La Crosse congressman had refused to disclose how we would vote before the roll call. In the end, Kind answered the call of his boss, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and cast his ballots for the two articles of impeachment.
He vehemently defended his vote — in a statement. He had to, Kind is one of 31 Democrats representing districts that Trump won in 2016. They’re nervous about 2020, and rightfully so. Trump voters are expected to be extremely motivated to oust vulnerable members of congress they believe assisted in a political witch-hunt against the Republican president.
Still, only two Democrats defected.
“It’s clear the President’s actions were a flagrant abuse of constitutional power; it was unlawful, and it jeopardized our national security,” Kind said, echoing a common refrain from Democrats who insist Trump’s handling of aid to Ukraine was an executive overreach. They tried to make the case that the president’s call with his Ukraine counterpart last summer amounted to pressuring a foreign leader to investigate a political rival, despite the transcript of the call refuting the charge and “whistleblowers” unable to provide concrete evidence of executive abuse.
“My vote today was not about the President himself — more importantly, it was about defending the rule of law, our Constitution, and what signal we send to future presidents of what is acceptable behavior,” Kind said.
U.S. Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-Glenbeulah) told Empower Wisconsin in an interview Wednesday that the message Democrats like Kind sent is that the House will move to impeach presidents they don’t like.
Trump becomes just the third president in U.S. history to be impeached. Polls show deminishing support for impeaching and removing Trump from office. Just as the impeachment debate was getting under way, Gallup released a poll showing support for Trump rising and a majority of voters surveyed — 51 percent — oppose impeachment and removal.