Georgia’s Collins: Impeachment move is example of ‘lowest depths of partisanship’

Georgia Republican remains President Trump’s strongest House advocate

President Donald Trump’s most ardent defender in the U.S. House wrote a scathing dissent of the Judiciary Committee’s recommendation that the 45th president be impeached.

U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, who represents North Georgia’s 9th Congressional District, has already gained national attention for his biting rebuttals of the Judiciary Committee’s impeachment proceedings, a committee on which he is the ranking member.

Explore»WATCH LIVE: House Rules Committee debating impeachment

On Monday, the committee released its full, 658-page report, in which it charged Trump with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. In that report, Collins wrote a dissenting opinion, in which he stated the Democratic majority’s desire to impeach is “rooted less in a concern for the nation than the debasement of the president.

Read Collins’ dissenting view here:

“History will record the impeachment of President Donald J. Trump as a signal that even the gravest constitutional remedy is not beyond political exploitation,” Collins wrote.

»INTERACTIVE: Impeachment tracker

“The majority’s actions are unprecedented, unjustifiable and will only dilute the significance of the dire recourse that is impeachment. If partisan passions are not restrained, the House of Representatives will be thrown into an endless cycle of impeachment, foregoing its duty to legislate and usurping the place of the American people in electing their president.”

On Tuesday, the House Rules Committee is expected to determine the ground rules for an overall House vote on impeachment, which could happen Wednesday.

Trump faces two articles of impeachment by House Democrats: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. They point to Trump pressuring Ukraine to investigate 2020 political rival Joe Biden while withholding as leverage military aid the country relies to counter Russia as well as his efforts to block the House investigation.

»READ: Judiciary Committee releases full impeachment report

A Senate impeachment trial could begin as soon as Jan. 9.

Trump would become only the third U.S. president to be impeached, following Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton. The House Judiciary Committee had passed articles of impeachment against Richard Nixon, who resigned before the full House could vote.

“The president has neither abused his power granted to him by the American people nor obstructed Congress,” Collins concluded. “The majority has failed to prove a case for impeachment. In fact, the paltry record on which the majority relies is an affront to the constitutional process of impeachment and will grave consequences for future presidents.

“The majority’s tactics and behavior ... emulate the charade impeachment of President Andrew Johnson, a president impeached because the House of Representatives did not agree with his policies.”