GOP complains Democrats won't stop trying to pass bills during impeachment


After weeks of complaining that the House Democrats 'do nothing' but impeachment, now House Republicans are complaining about the opposite.

Since the House of Representatives began its impeachment inquiry into potential abuses of power by Donald Trump, Trump and his Republican congressional defenders have repeatedly claimed it was making other legislation impossible. But on Monday, House Republicans reversed course and groused that Congress is working on election security while the impeachment inquiry is ongoing.

On Monday, House Oversight Republicans objected to news that the FBI plans to deliver a classified briefing on election interference to their committee later this week while the House Judiciary Committee holds its first impeachment hearing.

"Yet again, Democrats expect some of our members to be in two places at once," the group wrote. "Ridiculous."

It is nothing new that more than one of the dozens of House committees sometimes meet at the same time. Members who serve on more than one committee often have to make a choice of which hearing to attend, though of the 18 Republicans currently serving on the oversight panel, just three — Reps. Kelly Armstrong of North Dakota, Jim Jordan of Ohio, Greg Steube of Florida — are also members of the House Judiciary Committee.

According to a Roll Call attendance spreadsheet, two of those three have shown little interest in attending impeachment inquiry hearings so far. Armstrong attended just four of the 17 closed hearings for which transcripts have so far been released; Steube attended zero.

Jordan, the ranking Republican member of the oversight committee, attended 15, but agreed to be added to yet another committee last month — House Intelligence.

House Republicans have previously criticized the Democratic majority for not doing enough legislating while doing oversight of Trump and his administration. Just last week, the Oversight Committee Republicans posted a six-part list of things they believe Democrats are ignoring in favor of impeachment. Trump and House Republicans have accused the majority of being "Do Nothing Democrats."

But Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said last month that House Democrats can "walk and chew gum at the same time." And since taking the majority in January, the Democrats in the House have passed more than 400 separate pieces of legislation that have been blocked by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the Republican Senate majority. Among these are multiple bills addressing election security in the face of foreign meddling.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.