Just days after President Donald Trump was acquitted in a Senate impeachment trial regarding allegations that he abused his power and obstructed an investigation by Congress looking into the matter, members of the Republican Party are expressing their intentions to undo the entirety of impeachment altogether, through a vote of expungement, if the party wins control of the House later this year.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, speaking to the New York Post earlier in the week, explained that the GOP may use the idea of expunging the presidential impeachment as part of their platform to take control of Congress in the 2020 elections.
“This [was] the fastest, weakest, most political impeachment in history. I don’t think it should stay on the books,” McCarthy said.
Other Republicans agreed with McCarthy.
“I think there would be a groundswell of support” for legislation expunging Trump’s impeachment from the record, Rep. Mike Johnson (R-Louisiana) said.
REPORTER: Should the House expunge your impeachment?
TRUMP: They should because it was a hoax. pic.twitter.com/ckWVpR5VVL
— Red Nation Rising (@RedNationRising) February 7, 2020
On Friday, Trump himself was receptive to the idea. When asked by reporters on the White House lawn about the idea, the president enthusiastically backed the notion.
“They should because it was a hoax. It was a total political hoax,” he said in response, per reporting from the Washington Examiner.
Presuming that Republicans could win control of the House — a very big “if” at this point in time, since recent polling shows more Americans prefer Democrats remain in control of the legislative body — expungement of impeachment might be more of a “feel good” piece of legislation than anything else.
“The House could hold the vote but it would be more cathartic than constitutional,” conservative law professor Jonathan Turley said.
Comments made by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi earlier this week seem to highlight that point.
“He’s impeached forever, no matter what he says,” Pelosi remarked following Trump’s acquittal, according to the Washington Post. “You’re never getting rid of that scar.”