Upton says president's conduct was wrong, but not impeachable

Posted at 7:50 AM, Dec 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-13 07:50:34-05

U.S. Rep. Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, said in a statement Thursday that President Donald Trump's behavior does not warrant impeachment, but was "wrongheaded, inappropriate, and ill-advised."

Upton said the impeachment process against Trump is too partisan and motivated by what he believes is an attempt to undo the 2016 presidential election.

On Tuesday, House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., introduced two articles of impeachment: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

"I get it. Democrats aren’t happy with the result. But the time to vote on the next President is next November, not next week," Upton said.

Upton cited "many of the same reasons" for voting against the abuse of power article of impeachment against President Bill Clinton in 1998.

Upton said it's too soon to charge Trump with obstruction of Congress.

"Many times throughout history Presidents have demanded executive privilege," Upton said. "The Constitution establishes an independent judiciary for a reason, to settle disputes between the Executive Branch and the Legislative Branch. Since the courts have not ruled in this situation, obstruction of Congress is premature."

Upton said after the impeachment vote, which is expected to take place in the full U.S. House next week, lawmakers need to work on "bridging the partisan divide."

Upton has not officially declared whether or not he is running for reelection in 2020.