Republican Jim Jordan has come to the defence of Donald Trump just days after he received the Medal of Freedom, the highest honour a president can award to a civilian.
Mr Jordan called on Republican colleague Liz Cheney to be removed from GOP leadership for supporting the impeachment push before he delivered an impassioned rebuke on the House floor of the Democrats’ double-standards and obsession with “cancelling” the president.
As ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, the Ohio Republican was awarded the Medal of Freedom in part for leading “the effort to confront the impeachment witch hunt”.
Ahead of possible second impeachment, Mr Jordan joined other Trump allies to call for Ms Cheney to step down as House Republican Conference Chair for announcing plans to vote in favour of impeachment.
“We ought to have a second vote,” he told reporters, according to the Hill reporter pool. “The conference ought to vote on that.”
The Democrats introduced an article of impeachment on Wednesday accusing Mr Trump of “incitement to insurrection”.
During debate on the House floor, Mr Jordan said the clear double standards of the Democrats showed the attempt to remove the president one week before the end of his term wasn’t about impeachment, it was about “cancelling the president”.
If the impeachment passes both the House and Senate, it could open the option for a Senate majority to prevent Mr Trump from running for president again, amid speculation he will campaign in 2024.
Mr Jordan said both the Democrat chair of the House Rules Committee, and the Democrat managing the impeachment, were the first and second objectors to the election of Mr Trump in 2017 when Congress met to certify the Electoral College votes.
“And guess which state he objected to. Alabama. The very first state called. Alabama. President Trump I think won Alabama by like 80 points. Actually, he won it by 30 points. They can object to Alabama in 2017 but tell us we can’t object to Pennsylvania in 2021?” Mr Jordan said.
“Democrats objected to more states in 2017 than Republicans did last week but somehow we’re wrong. Democrats can raise bail for rioters and looters this summer but somehow when Republicans condemn all the violence, the violence this summer the violence last week, somehow we’re wrong. And Democrats can investigate the president of the United States, as Mr [Steny] Hoyer went through, try to investigate him for four years but will not look at an election that 80 million Americans, half the electorate, 80 million, Republicans and Democrats have their doubts about,” he added.
Mr Jordan was among several Republicans that objected to results in the key swing states that decided the presidential election during the joint session of Congress that was delayed by the mob of Trump supporters breaching the US Capitol.
Mr Trump is being impeached for his comments during the “Save America Rally” in Washington DC shortly before the protestors moved from his rally to the US Capitol, where elements of the crowd turned into a riot and breached the building.
“Now it is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on our democracy. And after this, we’re going to walk down and I’ll be there with you. We’re going to walk down… We’re going to walk down. Anyone you want, but I think right here, we’re going to walk down to the Capitol,” Mr Trump said.
“We have come to demand that Congress do the right thing and only count the electors who have been lawfully slated. Lawfully slated. I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.” he added.
Mr Jordan said Democrats were obsessed with cancelling the president and anyone who disagrees with him and that the impeachment was about “getting the president no matter what”, whether through spying on his campaign, the three-year Russia investigation, impeachment round one or impeachment round two
“It’s not just about impeachment anymore it’s about cancelling, as I’ve said, cancelling the president and anyone that disagrees with them,” he said.
“The ayatollah can tweet the president can’t. Democrats can object on January 6th 2017 but Republicans aren’t allowed on January 6th 2021. Democrats say Antifa’s a myth Republicans condemn all violence all the time. The double standard has to stop. And Frankly, the attack on the First Amendment has to stop.”