A group of veterans are meeting with congressional lawmakers on Capitol Hill on Tuesday and Wednesday, calling for them to “put country over politics” and support impeachment.
Defend American Democracy, a coalition of veterans and groups focused on national security, are talking with Republicans and moderate Democrats to push them to support impeachment, directly after the House Democrats released two articles of impeachment Tuesday morning.
Alex Babcock, an Army veteran from Sanford, Fla., said in an interview that the group is meeting with lawmakers from purple districts and states that they expect to be “convincible,” who could vote either way in the impeachment proceedings.
“We feel like they may be more apt to listen to a message that resonates, that might sway them away from their traditional party line, which is just back the president, no matter what,” Babcock said. “We’re appealing to their values as individual leaders to think for themselves and to embrace our perspective.”
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They are working on meeting with Rep. Jared Golden (D-Maine), Sen. Martha McSallyMartha Elizabeth McSallyGroup of veterans call on lawmakers to support impeachment, ‘put country over politics’ Here are the Senate Republicans who could vote to convict Trump Overnight Health Care: House to vote next week on drug prices bill | Conway says Trump trying to find ‘balance’ on youth vaping | US spent trillion on hospitals in 2018 MORE (R-Ariz.), Rep. Ann WagnerAnn Louise WagnerGroup of veterans call on lawmakers to support impeachment, ‘put country over politics’ Mnuchin expresses concerns about proposed taxes on financial trades Fed’s top regulator takes heat from both parties MORE (R-Mo.) and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) or their staffs.
Babcock said veterans have a “critical role in democracy,” as people “may be more apt to listen” to their perspective. He also seeks to counter the narrative that all military veterans back the president.
“We’re doing this because we truly believe in this, and we believe in our country, which is why we signed up in the first place,” he said.
Tashandra Poullard, a Navy veteran from Houston, said she volunteered to speak to lawmakers because she does not want to witness foreign interference in the U.S. election process.
“And the last thing I want is for my legacy to be blemished by serving people who did not understand nor respect the Constitution of the United States of America,” she said.
She wants to ask Republican lawmakers particularly, “Is it more important to protect and defend the Constitution or protect one individual that feels that they are above the law?”
Defend American Democracy recently funded a seven-figure ad campaign, asking constituents to call at least 14 Republican House members across 10 states to tell them to “put country over politics” and back impeachment.
House Democrats announced two articles of impeachment against the president Tuesday morning: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. The House Judiciary Committee said a House vote on impeachment could come as early as next week.
President TrumpDonald John TrumpRepublicans consider skipping witnesses in Trump impeachment trial Bombshell Afghanistan report bolsters calls for end to ‘forever wars’ Lawmakers dismiss Chinese retaliatory threat to US tech MORE faces possible impeachment after a complaint from a whistleblower informed Congress that the president asked the Ukrainian president to investigate former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenRepublicans consider skipping witnesses in Trump impeachment trial Trump trade deal likely to sow division in Democratic presidential field Trump supporters at Pa. rally ‘upset’ after Democrats introduce impeachment articles MORE, shortly after withholding military aid from the country.
Since the end of September, House Democrats have held closed-door and public hearings with former and current Trump officials who had knowledge on the White House’s relationship with Ukraine.
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