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Tue Nov 19, 2019, 07:44 PM

Using grab bag of arguments, Republicans stick together against impeachment

They’ve called the testimony “secondhand information” and “hearsay.” They’ve defended the president’s right to investigate corruption abroad. They’ve raised questions about the anonymous whistleblower who started the probe. They’ve argued that nothing ultimately happened. And, over and over, they’ve attacked the process.

Republicans battling the potential impeachment of President Trump have flitted among a multitude of shifting — and, at times, contradictory — defenses and deflections as they seek to cast doubt on a narrative supported by mounting evidence: that Trump subverted U.S. foreign policy to further his personal aims by pressuring Ukraine to launch politically motivated investigations, using hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid as leverage.

While those attacks — at least 22, according to a Washington Post tally — have done little to undermine the core allegations under investigation in the House, they have been remarkably successful in one respect: keeping congressional Republicans united against impeachment as the GOP casts the probe as partisan.

“Different people have different issues,” said Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.). “One might have problems with the process. One has problems with the underlying facts. Some people say, ‘Well, gosh, I don’t agree with the phone call, but it’s not impeachable.’ So you get all kinds of different paradigms that it’s being viewed through. . . . Everybody will gravitate to their strongest argument that they feel most comfortable with.”


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