Fred Upton, Peter Meijer join Michigan Democrats in impeaching Trump

Donald Trump is the only president in U.S. history to be impeached twice. (Bridge file photo)

Two Republicans from Michigan were among 10 GOP lawmakers to join in the historic second impeachment of President Donald Trump following a siege of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. last week. 

U.S. Reps Fred Upton of St. Joseph and Peter Meijer of Grand Rapids on Wednesday voted to impeach the president after they say he encouraged his supporters to storm the Capitol in a riot that killed five, including a police officer. 

“The president betrayed his oath of office by seeking to undermine our constitutional process, and he bears responsibility for inciting the violent acts of insurrection last week," Meijer said in a Wednesday statement just before the vote.  

Meijer and Upton joined all seven Michigan Democrats in supporting the measure. 

"If inciting an insurrection does not warrant impeachment, nothing does,” Rep. Dan Kildee, D-Flint, said during the House debate.  “I took an oath to uphold the constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic. Today, I vote to uphold my oath."

Five of Michigan’s Republican lawmakers voted no on impeachment: Reps Lisa McClain of Romeo, Jack Bergman of Watersmeet, Bill Huizenga of Zeeland, John Moolenaar of Midland and Tim Walberg of Tipton. 

In a rally before rioters stormed the Capitol building last week while Congress convened to count the nation’s electoral college votes, Trump told his supporters to march to the Capitol and “show strength.” After the breach, he said to the rioters in a tweet, “We love you. You’re very special.”

It’s unlikely that the Senate would take up impeachment before Trump’s term expires on Jan. 20, but it could still hold hearings after he leaves office.

Here are the votes and views of Michigan’s congressional delegation.

Voting yes

Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Dearborn, who said “if there are no consequences for a president attempting to siege the legislative branch of our government, the message of permission for undemocratic violence will be heard in this country and in every corner of the world.”

Rep. Brenda Lawrence, D-Southfield, who said “we in this country cannot begin healing and unity without accountability and justice. The president of the United States incited a violence insurrection against Congress.”

Rep. Andy Levin, D-Bloomfield Township, who on Wednesday called last week’s riot a “grotesque orgy of deadly white supremacism, anti-semitism and strong man rule.”

Rep. Elissa Slotkin, D-Holly, who explained her rationale for impeachment in an op-ed in the Detroit Free Press that claimed the “president incited domestic terrorists and an insurrection against the constitutional rule of law.” 

Rep. Haley Stevens, D-Rochester Hills, who noted Trump took hours to implore the mob to go home despite calls for help from lawmakers. “He failed to lead and therefore proved himself incapable of doing so,” she said. 

Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Detroit, who said Republicans are also to blame for the violence for spreading lies about election fraud. "They have torn this country apart,” she said. “They have stoked the fire and then handed the gasoline to Donald Trump.”

Meijer who said he wrestled with whether impeachment is the best recourse to hold the president accountable.  “This vote is not a victory. . .But it is a call for action for us to reflect on these events and seek ways to correct them,” Meijer said in his statement. 

Kildee, who commended Meijer for showing “tremendous courage” for the vote.  

Upton  who said “it is time to say: enough is enough. The Congress must hold President Trump to account and send a clear message that our country cannot and will not tolerate any effort by any President to impede the peaceful transfer of power from one President to the next.”


Rep. Lisa McClain, R-Romeo, who acknowledged that Trump “could have done more” to quell riots but “impeachment is a backwards-looking tactic when we are all wanting to move our nation forward.” 

Rep. Tim Walberg, R-Tipton, who said there is only a week remaining in Trump’s term and impeachment “will only deepen the nation’s divisions at a time of heightened turmoil.”

Rep. Jack Bergman, R-Watersmeet, who said impeachment would only further divide the nation and “derail legislation that would help our constituents.”

No comments: Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Zeeland, and Rep. John Moolenaar, R-Midland.

Facts matter. Trust matters. Journalism matters.

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Wed, 01/13/2021 - 7:42pm

Impeachment would only further divide, said Michigan 1st Congressional District Rep. Jack Bergman.

What could be more divisive than asking the U.S. Supreme Court to invalidate Michigan's election and Congress to disregard Michigan's Electoral College votes? Which is exactly what Bergman did. Imagine the backlash that would have happened if Bergman had been successful in getting either the U.S. Supreme Court or Congress to buy into his Big Lie, that Michigan's election was skewed by widespread fraud.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 10:36am

Hypocrisy, to R's, is unrecognizable.
I'm wondering if it's genetic, as it seems so pervasive.

Trump ruined fa...
Fri, 01/15/2021 - 5:02pm

Definitely not genetic because Trump has succeeded in completely destroying family unity along with national unity.

Unite this!
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 12:20pm

True and think about how divisive Republicans have been over the years, denying an up or down vote for Obama's judicial nominations, then hypocritically pushing through all of Trump's highly controversial judicial appointments. Time for truth and ending the GOP false equivalencies.

Justice over anarchy
Fri, 01/15/2021 - 5:05pm

Thankfully Trump's appointees snubbed him and upheld the US Constitution/the validity of the 2020 elections.

Mon, 01/18/2021 - 1:27pm

I like principled Republicans, like Meijer. Saw him on the news shows. He's refreshing especially after the Trump years, going as far back as his birther insanity.

Trump's America
Wed, 01/13/2021 - 8:11pm

Very proud of these Republicans! We have to take the terrorist threats seriously. You can try all you want to secure some government buildings, but you can't secure them all, especially with the open meetings laws and lax gun laws. Then think about all the possible soft targets and non-governmental buildings. We have to jail domestic terrorist just as vigorously as foreign terrorists.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 7:59am

This second impeachment was a complete waste of time and energy. Nothing but a feel good for a bunch of vile disgusting people.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 12:31pm

The vile, disgusting people were the ones who stood on stage at the rally held just before the attack and said things like: "You will never take back our country with weakness" and "lets have a trial by combat" and urged all those in attendance to march over to the Capitol building to "fight" and to "STOP the steal."

What was vile and disgusting was the president continuing his lie in a video released during the riots where he told those people who were beating police with flagpoles and fire extinguishers that he loved them and that they are "very special." What's vile and disgusting is the head of the FBI testified before congress MONTHS AGO and said the greatest threat in the country is domestic terrorism by white nationalists and white supremacists fueled by far-right rhetoric; yet Trump didn't like the optics of activating the National Guard for January 6th so he chose not to. The same FBI that warned of 'war' at the Capitol the day before but still no precautions were taken to increase security to our Capitol. Trump never even made the call for the national guard, it was Pence who did so while his life was literally in danger because of Trump's lies.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 12:36pm

I can't imagine anyone feels good about any of this. Our country is a complete mess and it really looks like there is no way to make things better. I can't even recognize family members who support Trump. We all need a break from the stress of so many years of constant provocative tweets and mounting anxiety. As long as Trump continues his rants, whether in office or out, we will not have peace anywhere ever again, but especially right now as Trump presents a clear and present danger with his words and dog whistles. Crucial department heads continue to resign and we don't know who is in charge while the FBI warns of mounting threats across the country, including Michigan.

G Semer
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 10:34pm

You’ve been lied to.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 9:16am

Thank you Fred and Peter, you did the right thing. I believe that history will bear this out. Many politicians talk about working across the aisle, but few do. Your vote is an example of walking the walk.

Moral Compass
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 12:45pm

Yes, Trump lost the election, then lied about it. He called his supporters to rebel and they chanted they would kill his vice president, whom he called a "pu__y" for not committing a crime Pence, and Pelosi, the next two inline for succession while the Congress was in the act of certifying the vote. They had zip ties and the gallows waiting. They killed police and desecrated the US Capitol. Trump watched the insurrection with glee, never attempting to stop it. Since then he never expressed remorse for the people who died during the insurrection he promoted. It doesn't matter if you are a Republican or a Democrat. Trump will unleash his militant mob of goons on you, if you disagree with him. He operates like the mafia.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 9:16am

The FBI needs to look at how many republicans were in on the coup!!!!

Cindy L
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 9:26am

To Representatives Meijer and Upton, thank you for your courage and clear vision to stand up to the president and those who blindly follow him, and to uphold your oath to defend the US Constitution. Regardless of how much time is left in the president's term, he is not above the law in honoring the Constitution, which he has been allowed to flagrantly disavow for 4 years. To the others saying that impeachment will cause further division in the country, the division is present and clear. Turning a blind eye to this instigation of insurrection heals nothing. It's time to deal with your own fears and admit what happened on 6 January 2020.

Law and Order
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 12:52pm

You are right, but we need to increase police funding to arrest the people threatening our elected officials. They are clearly domestic terrorists, enemies of democracy.

Kate Convissor
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 9:52am

I'm proud that two Michigan Republicans were among the 10 who voted to impeach Donald Trump. Although this vote would seem to be an obvious, and indeed, a necessary response to the Capitol attack, partisan politics being what it is, the obvious and necessary vote was instead an act of courage. I was especially impressed with freshman congressman Peter Meijer, who spoke out with clarity, passion, and truth. Thanks to both these men.

GOP Dump Trump!
Fri, 01/15/2021 - 5:10pm

Sadly, now Meijer, like all officials, Democratic or Republican who stand for truth, are getting death threats! Trump turned our country into a Banana Republic with mob rule.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 10:06am

It is so called Republicans like this that have put us in the position we are in...they need to go...

Fri, 01/15/2021 - 5:11pm

You need some proper nouns in your post. No one understands it.

Bob Dunn
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 10:09am

I want to thank the two Republicans who stood up against their party and for our Constitution. They put country over party. As for the three who were willing to sell out our state and country I would hope they would be expelled from congress. They do not care about our state or country only about trump and themselves.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 11:21am

You claim: "Facts matter. Trust matters. Journalism matters" yet you state that 5 people were "killed", when in fact 2 were killed and 3 died of medical emergencies. Dirtying the waters is not doing anything to calm the hatred and resulting violence.

Fri, 01/15/2021 - 5:13pm

All would be alive but for the seditionists and all who were complicit and cheered them on. Does that include you?

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 11:41am

The justifications given for voting "Nay" by Rep.s McClain, Wahlberg and Bergman are deflecting, spurious and miss the point of the serious issue at hand. Their proclaimed reasons for voting "Nay" are also telling in that they don't deny the legitimacy of the allegations against Trump. They imply that "yes what he did was impeachable, but that impeachment is a 'backwards looking tactic' to quote Rep. Mclain as an example. Their justifications ring hollow. The REAL issue at hand here is that Trump actively set up the situation and directly incited his followers to attack a co-equal branch of our government. AND did nothing of substance to prevent it or pull it back once it was underway. He betrayed his God sworn oath to protect the Constitution which governs our land. It is a president's primary directive and Trump directly acted in opposition to it. All Congressional representatives are also obligated by sworn oath to to uphold the Constitution and that duty includes removing threats to it like the one that exists in Donald Trump. These representatives are betraying their oath. Impeaching Trump will not weaken the Constitution but will instead strengthen its power. Leaving Trump in office for some vague notion of not wanting to deepen divisions is a blow to the Constitution.

I applaud the Republican congressmen who were brave enough to stand up and vote in favor of impeachment in the face of tremendous pressure from their political party. They chose to put the Constitution first as is their obligation and showed real integrity. Peter Meijer is my district's representative. As a voter that leans progressive, I did not vote for him this past election. However, barring any super egregious policy votes on his part, I will almost certainly vote for him if he runs again based purely on his principled stand against the threat to this country that is Donald Trump.

Ian Bund
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 11:56am

I commend Cong Upton and Meijer for focusing on the facts of January 6,2021 and voting for the good of the country. The Congress and Senate were first hand witnesses of the attack on the Capitol and them for the sole purpose of thwarting the peaceful processing of the Nov 3,2020 vote. Legislators not responding to the facts of that day such as Bergman and Walberg need to remember their oath and why they have been sent to represent us. As a General, Jack Bergman has taken separate oaths to protect the country—he knows better. Walberg has no record of being responsible so we cannot expect him to do the right thing.

GOP Values Party
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 12:16pm

Trump is about to declare bankruptcy again.

Meanwhile, DeVos resigned. The DeVos family funded Meijer's campaign. Even the Koch brothers are reconsidering who they fund. So it looks like Meijer and Upton made the correct call. It's all about the money people. Not sure those people hold any moral high ground after fueling Trump for all these years, but they are no longer going to fund Trump, at least for now. It remains to be seen for 2024. 91% of the GOP still stands with Trump...

If you want change, google how to get family members out of a cult. Our country can't go on like this.

Thu, 01/14/2021 - 1:00pm

Given Trump's supporters are planning riots this weekend, the Senate should convene immediately and convict!

J Hendricks
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 2:30pm

Uptown and Meijer are classic silver spoon progeny of enormous wealth - the ultimate country club Republicans. They have no idea why Trump got elected in the first place and have tried to get the country back to the normal pillaging and amassing of wealth that is their due. After all Trump was just so . . . . uncouth! The peasants are not going away. Might be wise to review the genesis of the French Revolution.

Jerry A
Mon, 01/18/2021 - 1:32pm

Trump had fake wealth, fake bone spurs, fake experience, fake patriotism, fake Christianity, but a whole lot of lies, a loud mouth, and hatred for anything but himself. Just glad to see him go.

Something's fishy
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 2:40pm

We should all be able to unite around holding insurrectionists accountable, especially when Trump and a lot of his supporters claim they were Antifa, right?

Given those allegations, I wonder why Trump didn't attempt to stop them. Let's look into it!

Investigation into Lawmakers Giving Rioters Tours a Day Before the Riot

Seems Republican lawmakers weren't concerned that people with ties to radical militias wanted to know where Democrats Nancy Pelosi's and Jim Clyburn's offices were.

Judy Bergeski
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 3:43pm

Thank you Representatives Upton and Meijer for having the courage to speak truth to power. It is time to end the fear elected officials have of a man who does not deserve our support or respect our democracy.

Judy Bergeski
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 3:46pm

Thank you to Representatives Upton and Meijer for their courage to speak truth to power. It is time to end the fear of elected officials for a man who does not deserve our respect nor does he respect our democracy.

Diane J
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 4:30pm

I am so proud of Reps. Meijer and Upton for standing up forthe country instead of falling in lockstep with the rest of their party members. This is what REAL patriots do, they put country over party and right over wrong.

Gary Wolfe
Thu, 01/14/2021 - 6:00pm

I'm not surprised by Fred Upton's impeachment vote as he's been a rhino for quite some time. Peter Meijer on the other hand assured the voters he agreed with the Trump agenda. We now know different. See you two at the ballot box and it isn't going to be pretty !!! Bye Bye !!!

Tue, 01/19/2021 - 11:35am

Is Liz Cheney a RINO as well? What about Bill Barr, Mike Pence, or Mitch McConnell? Trump called his followers to rally Washington back in December, telling them to be there for Jan 6th and that it "will be wild." At the rally held before the attack, Trump told his supporters "you will never take back our country with weakness" and urged them to march to the capitol. Rudy Giuliani told supporters at that same rally "lets have a trial by combat." While the attack was happening, Trump released a video that didn't condemn the violence but instead said to the rioters: "I love you, you are special, go home"; like they were drunk friends at a bar and not rioters who were literally erected a gallows and called for the heads of Mike Pence, Nancy Pelosi, and anyone else who refused to go along with Trump's "big lie."

Rose Johnson
Fri, 01/15/2021 - 2:07pm

I want to applaud Peter Meijer and Fred Upton for the courage they showed in demanding justice for the attack on our Capital. It was not easy for them to vote for Impeachment and may even cost them politically but their vote of conscience should help them sleep at night and know they will go down in history as courageous representatives from MI, whose generations will look proudly upon. The fact that they are now threatened for their vote is another example of the element of radicalism we must show our disapproval of now and in the future.

Pro Life?
Fri, 01/15/2021 - 4:59pm

It's ridiculous to compare Trump to Nixon. Comparatively speaking, Nixon was never impeached. He had higher morals, even gave us the EPA. He resigned and left peacefully, ashamed. In contrast, Trump was impeached twice, destroyed our environmental laws and now has the audacity to make taxpayers pay for a military salute when he leaves, too cowardly to attend the inauguration, after sending seditionists to kill his VP and capitol police. His cult following mob shouted to "kill the police officer with his own gun."