Neguse on Face the Nation: Despite failing, Trump impeachment trial was historic
Congressman Joe Neguse, who represents Vail and other parts of Eagle County in the U.S. House of Representatives, was part of the impeachment team
After delivering the closing remarks in the latest impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump on Saturday, Vail and parts of Eagle County, Congressman Joe Neguse was interviewed on the CBS News program “Face the Nation” on Sunday.
Neguse said Saturday’s vote, while falling 10 votes short of impeaching Trump, was “the most bipartisan impeachment vote in the history of our republic.”
Neguse, who was named to his impeachment manager position in January, took an on-air opportunity Sunday to salute the seven Republican senators who voted in favor of impeachments. “Face the Nation” is among the longest-running television news programs in history, running since 1954.
“People like Ben Sasse and Mitt Romney, really a profile in courage in my view in terms of the vote that they took,” Neguse told host Margaret Brennan.
Neguse fielded some tough questions in the live interview, including the most obvious question of did this effort ever have a chance of persuading Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to support it.
Neguse said while delivering his closing remarks, he remained optimistic that he could make a difference.
“I was hopeful that every Senator would ultimately vote to do the right thing,” Neguse said.
‘Considered the evidence’
In a statement released Sunday, Colorado Senator John Hickenlooper said he believed the evidence showed former President Trump seeking to overturn a free and fair election.
“In doing so, he incited an insurrection and threatened the peaceful transfer of power — the very bedrock of our democracy,” Hickenlooper said in the statement. “I’m hopeful that we can turn the page on this dark chapter in American history and move forward as a country to tackle the pressing challenges ahead.”
Neguse said he also believed the evidence showed Trump to be impeachable, saying the seven Republican senators who voted in favor of impeachment “considered the evidence and reached the same conclusion we did, that the president incited insurrection.”
In a statement released Saturday, Colorado Senator Michael Bennet described the president’s incitement of the mob to attack as demagoguery.
“Although the Senate fell short of the required two-thirds majority, our bipartisan vote reflects the powerful evidence that President Trump breached his oath of office,” Bennet said.
National media spotlight
Neguse’s Sunday morning appearance was part of a whirlwind of major media appearances in the last week; he was also featured on NBC nightly news earlier in the week and was on the PBS evening news on Saturday. Neguse’s interview led off the “Face the Nation” broadcast on Sunday morning.
In picking up a portion of the interview on Sunday, CBS News, in a separate story, highlighted Neguse’s characterization that witnesses “would not have made a difference” in the impeachment trial.
Brennan asked Neguse why he backed off the request for witnesses in the trial.
“It’s a fair question,” Neguse responded. “I don’t know that I would characterize it that way.”
Brennan referenced the fact that the Senate voted to allow witnesses in the trial on Saturday, but then reversed the decision following a discussion between House managers and Trump’s attorneys.
“Whether it was five more witnesses or 5,000 witnesses, it is very clear that the senators who voted to acquit on a technicality — which was the jurisdictional argument, that we had successfully defended early in the trial and actually had convinced a majority of the Senate, including Republicans, that the Senate did have presidential jurisdiction to move forward — it would not have made a difference to those senators,” Neguse said in response.