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Congressman Mark Pocan: “It’s Our Constitutional Duty”

January 13, 2021

Picture from PBSWisconsin.org

I was looking for some special cookies or even just dark chocolate following the three hours of debate in the House concerning the current impeachment of Donald Trump. It was not that I was opposed to the news coverage. I feel quite the opposite. There is a duty of the nation to respond with a consequential reaction equal to the weight of the assault on our Capitol one week ago today.

Rather, I was looking for some sweets to compensate for the display by Republicans who were spinning a narrative that the nation needed to “heal” and that an impeachment would only further divide the citizenry. I know we live in a world where 30-minute sitcoms are about the attention-span of the nation. But I recall the past four years where these same members of Congress supported and usually encouraged the divisiveness of Trump. To now pretend they are taking a higher moral stand about healing is hypocrisy on steroids.

Second-District Democratic Congressman Mark Pocan, which represents all of Dane County, concisely summed up the need for the impeachment proceedings. Impeaching a President who incited a violent insurrection isn’t divisive, he said, in response to the on-going GOP claims.

Instead, he made it perfectly clear as to what is required when it comes to impeaching Trump. “It’s our Constitutional duty.” He added that it was “not another country that attacked us, it was our own president.”

I played back the statement by Pocan three times as it hit to the very core of how I feel. The need for the House to act as they did today is because the president incited an attack against his own government. Against his own people! THINK ABOUT THAT.

While I applaud the words from Pocan, along with the many others who grasp the gravity of the moment, and the need to address the call of history I had hoped that more Republicans would appreciate the enormity of the action Trump took against our country. It should concern us all, regardless of how we view our political allegiances when some cavalier attitudes, as presented on the House floor today, turns a blind eye on last week’s riot that was designed to undermine the constitutional procedures for certifying the election results.

Pocan only had a short time to speak, as did most House members. Had there been more time he might have talked about how our nation must now, and always, demand adherence to the rule of law. We never submit to the pitchfork-carrying mobs. And we absolutely denounce those who would foment such an insurrection.

No one can take any pleasure in the requirement that this congress undertook when impeaching Trump. No one takes partisan delight as this is a sad and dispiriting time for our nation. But it was a most-needed action for the history books.

Thanks to ten Republicans and the entire House majority a message has been sent about sedition from the highest level of our government.

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