South Carolina Republican Congressman Tom Rice shocked his home state on Wednesday when he voted to impeach Donald Trump.
The vote was so uncharacteristic of the congressman many thought it was a mistake, considering Trump carried his district by a landslide in 2020.
Rice released a statement Wednesday evening clarifying that his vote to impeach Trump was indeed intentional.
“I have backed this president through thick and thin for four years,” Rice tweeted. “I campaigned for him and voted for him twice. But, this utter failure is inexcusable.”
Rice also joined fellow South Carolina GOP congressmen Jeff Duncan, Ralph Norman, William Timmons and Joe Wilson in objecting to the certification of U.S. president-elect Joe Biden last week.
Here is Rice’s full statement regarding his vote:
“Under the strict definition of the law, I don’t know if the President’s speech last Wednesday morning amounted to incitement of a riot, but any reasonable person could see the potential for violence.”
“Once the violence began, when the Capitol was under siege, when the Capitol Police were being beaten and killed, and when the Vice President and the Congress were being locked down, the President was watching and tweeted about the Vice President’s lack of courage.”
“For hours while the riot continued, the President communicated only on Twitter and offered only weak requests for restraint.”
“I was on the floor of the House of Representatives when the rioters were beating on the door with tear gas, zip tie restraints, and pipe bombs in their possession. It is only by the grace of God and the blood of the Capitol Police that the death toll was not much, much higher.”
“It has been a week since so many were injured, the United States Capitol was ransacked, and six people were killed, including two police officers. Yet, the President has not addressed the nation to ask for calm. He has not visited the injured and grieving. He has not offered condolences. Yesterday in a press briefing at the border, he said his comments were ‘perfectly appropriate.'”
“I have backed this President through thick and thin for four years. I campaigned for him and voted for him twice. But, this utter failure is inexcusable.”
Rice was one of ten Republicans to cross party lines and vote in favor of impeachment.
After the vote, he found himself trending on Twitter …
Rice represents South Carolina’s very red seventh congressional district – which currently consists of Georgetown and Horry counties as well as the northern portion of the so-called “Corridor of Shame,” an impoverished third world section of the Palmetto State traversed by Interstate 95.
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