President Donald Trump enlisted a freshman Democratic congressman from Cape May County as a defender in a tweet Sunday night, quoting Jeff Van Drew as saying none of the evidence so far appears to call for impeachment.
“Thank you,” Trump tweeted after quoting Van Drew. “Just another Witch Hunt by Nancy Pelosi and the Do Nothing Democrats!”
Van Drew is among about a dozen congressional Democrats who do not support the impeachment inquiry, and the only one from the Philadelphia region. Van Drew, in an interview Sunday night, said Trump quoted him from an interview he gave Sunday morning on Fox and Friends. "I’m not defending anybody,” he said, but reiterated that he didn’t see enough evidence to warrant impeaching Trump, and was concerned about negative consequences for the nation from an effort to do so.
“I have long maintained the position that the impeachment or potential impeachment would not be good for Democrats or Republicans,” Van Drew said.
The question of impeachment has dominated the national political discussion since Tuesday, when Pelosi, the house speaker, announced a formal impeachment inquiry into whether Trump delayed hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to Ukraine in an effort to get information about Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his son Hunter, who conducted business in the country, that he could use in his election campaign.
A whistle-blower report, and a loose transcript of a conversation between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, pushed the talk of impeachment, which until then had been favored largely by the Democrats’ progressive wing, to a level that party centrists could embrace.
“The actions of the Trump presidency revealed dishonorable facts of the president’s betrayal of his oath of office, betrayal of our national security, and betrayal of the integrity of our elections,” Pelosi said Tuesday.
Van Drew sees little chance of Trump’s removal by the GOP-controlled Senate, which would likely hold a trial on any articles of impeachment from the House. The impeachment discussion is unwarranted, he said, likely to be fruitless, and a distraction from issues important to voters, including immigration and health care.