Oklahoma's Delegation Vote Against Second Impeachment Of President Trump

Oklahoma's Delegation Vote Against Second Impeachment Of President Trump

Exactly one week after members of Congress were taking cover from a rampaging mob, a bipartisan majority of the U.S. House voted to impeach President Donald Trump for inciting the deadly insurrection.

With the 232-197 vote, Trump becomes the first president to be impeached twice. Ten Republicans joined Democrats in taking the action just seven days before the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.

Oklahoma's five House members -- all Republicans -- voted no on the impeachment article, arguing that it was being rushed through and that it would only serve to further divide an already divided nation.

"Mr. Speaker, there is still a way to unite the country," said Rep. Tom Cole, (R) OK-4. "Let us look forward, not backward."

Cole managed the GOP floor debate Wednesday morning on the procedural measure allowing the article to be brought up for consideration. Cole has said he believes Trump bears some responsibility for the mob violence on Jan. 6 that engulfed the Capitol, but he told his colleagues on Wednesday that's no reason for the House rush an impeachment without providing due process.

"We deserve better than that, Mr. Speaker, and the American people deserve better than that," Cole stated.

"I think this is a rush to judgment and no investigation has been done," said Rep. Stephanie Bice, (R) OK-5, in an interview Wednesday.

Bice said the president's words to his supporters last Wednesday certainly didn't help the situation, but she said he deserved to be able to offer a defense.

What's more, she said, Congress has more important things to do right now than impeach a president who has a week left in office.

"We need to be working together to support the new administration coming in and really focusing on the future," Bice said.

Outside of the House chamber this week, the focus has been on ramping up security for the inauguration on January 20. With 10,000 National Guard members expected in Washington by this weekend, the U.S. Capitol is beginning to resemble a fortress more than the People's House.

But the people of the House spoke in bipartisan fashion. Now, the question is when the Senate will hold its impeachment trial. At present, the Senate is not scheduled to be back in session until the day before the inauguration.