When Donald Trump announced Tuesday that the White House would release a transcript of his controversial call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Independent Justin Amash emphasized that it’s not about the transcript — it’s about Trump’s “continuing abuse of the office of the presidency.”
The transcript has now been released and reveals that Trump indeed asked Zelensky to dig up dirt on Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, as well as locate a Democratic National Committee (DNC) computer server that went missing that he believes to be possessed by Ukraine. The damning conversation continues to support the recently announced impeachment proceedings and — according to Amash — is a “devastating indictment” of Trump.
“Again, it’s not just about a call, but even the call is a devastating indictment of the president,” he tweeted, before citing the portion of the transcript when Trump asked Zelensky for a favor.
Amash was the first Republican to call for Trump’s impeachment. After the backlash he received from within his party — and a long time of dissatisfaction with the GOP — he became an Independent. Per Vox, Amash previously criticized Pelosi for hesitating to impeach Trump and suggested that she was doing so for selfish reasons.
“If there’s one thing Speaker Pelosi wants more than anything, it’s to stay in power. You can see what she’s doing, for example, with impeachment. I don’t think it’s a sound strategy, unless she only cares about staying in power and not doing what’s right.”
According to Amash, it is “very hard” to push people to “change the system” by debating things and making tough decisions for outcomes that are not predetermined.
Thank you again to Representative Justin Amash for being part of our Constitution day here on campus. pic.twitter.com/IRtni66npz
— Michigan Law School (@UMichLaw) September 16, 2019
Amash has openly criticized the current state of the GOP. He claims that the current Republican Party under Trump is not based on the traditional conservative principles of limited government and fiscal conservatism. The 39-year-old claims that conservatives who are voting for the GOP are supporting a party that is in conflict with their values and urges them to “walk away.”
“Conservatives are providing critical votes to a party that actively opposes limited government and free markets,” he tweeted. “Walk away, start something new, and regain your voice.”
Sources close to Amash believe that he is considering running as a Libertarian Party presidential candidate. While one source says he is waiting to consider his chances of securing a nomination, another claims he is waiting to see if former House colleague Mark Sanford runs as a Republican nominee — which he has since done. However, The Hill reports that Amash claims Sanford’s decision won’t impact his decision to run.