Some Republicans Reportedly Want To Impeach Donald Trump But Fear Punishment

U.S. President Donald Trump hosts a roundtable discussion with small business owners and members of his administration in the Roosevelt Room at the White House December 06, 2019 in Washington, DC.
Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

During a Thursday interview with CNN, Washington Republican Rep. Denny Heck touched on the two articles of impeachment against Donald Trump and how his party colleagues in the House of Representatives feel about them, Newsweek reports.

“Any Republican who would vote ‘yes’ on the articles of impeachment, and we all know that there are some who would like to do that, they will privately acknowledge it sometimes, but that if they do, they will be punished,” Heck said.

“Indeed, by the president they’ll be viciously punished.”

According to Heck, there are Republicans in Congress who are “deeply, deeply concerned” about Trump’s behavior and believe that his conduct when dealing with Ukraine was “wrong.” The 67-year-old politician claims that he has spoken with more than one Republican colleague who revealed they don’t agree with Trump and believe that “the course that he is on is wrong for America.”

Heck’s comments echo former Republican Rep. Justin Amash, who was the first member of the GOP to call for Trump’s impeachment in the wake of Robert Mueller’s report into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Speaking on CNN‘s Erin Burnett OutFront in October, Amash previously said he believes Republicans feel “trapped” in a position where they must lie to defend Trump for his Ukraine behavior.

“I think they know better and I think, deep down, they wish they weren’t, you know, trapped in this position,” Amash said, adding that he hears his Republican colleagues on the House floor express “how they wish they weren’t doing this.”

The 39-year-old Michigan representative believes that the recent retirements in Congress are tied to such Republicans who feel bound to the president’s behavior. Amash said he thinks some retirees will return to public office once Trump is out of the White House.

In the articles of impeachment, Trump is accused of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. According to Democrats, Trump’s alleged pressure campaign on Ukraine — carried out with the president’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani — was tantamount of asking a foreign government to meddle in an election in the United States. In addition, they believe that the White House’s refusal to comply with subpoenas tied to the impeachment probe is obstructing Congress, noting that the Constitution provides Congress with the power to pursue impeachment.

Given that it takes 51 votes for the House to impeach Trump and Democrats hold a 233-197 majority in the chamber, many believe that Trump will likely be impeached regardless of Republican support. Amash, an Independent, previously said he would vote “yes” on three articles of impeachment — abuse of power, obstruction of Congress, and obstruction of justice — the latter of which was never brought against the president.