Latest GOP impeachment stunt causes security scare


Capitol Police were called after suspicious packages from the National Republican Campaign Committee appeared outside several congressional offices.

The campaign arm of House GOP came under fire on Thursday after one of its stunts prompted congressional staffers to call the Capitol Police.

After the House voted Thursday on a resolution laying out the impeachment process, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) placed moving boxes outside the offices of several Democratic members, an apparent attempt to indicate those voting in favor of the impeachment resolution would be voted out of office in next year's election.

The incident caused at least one office to call Capitol Police officers to investigate the suspicious packages.

The Capitol Police later concluded that there were no safety issues, stating in an email Thursday afternoon that the "incident has been cleared."

A spokesperson for Rep. Chris Pappas (D-NH) confirmed in a phone call that his office had been one of those that received a moving box from the NRCC. The spokesperson described the package as taped-up cardboard box with a pink bow on it, with a sign on the side saying it was from the NRCC.

Pappas' office did not call the Capitol Police.

The moving boxes were first reported by HuffPost's Matt Fuller, who tweeted out a photo of a box outside Democratic Pennsylvania Rep. Conor Lamb's office.

As Fuller noted, "Apparently no one at the NRCC took a second to think whether sending congressional offices suspicious looking packages was a sound idea, which sounds about right."

The move comes one year after a series of attempted pipe bombings targeting Democratic politicians, as well as two liberal philanthropists and some members of the media. Those targeted had been criticized by Donald Trump as enemies, and the man eventually convicted for the attempted bombings, Cesar Sayoc, had expressed ardent support for Trump in the past.

The move also follows one week after House Republicans stormed a secure room to disrupt an impeachment inquiry hearing with a top Pentagon official. Several members took their phones into the secure room with them, a possible breach of national security.

The NRCC refused to comment on the most recent stunt.

Later on Thursday, the NRCC tweeted, "We know Democrats love investigations but why are they looking a gift horse in the mouth? These boxes will be useful next November!"

The majority of Americans in fact support the current impeachment inquiry into Trump, which is focused on his efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate his political rival, Joe Biden. A recent poll also showed that impeaching Trump was far more popular than the impeachment effort against President Bill Clinton.

Further, a Grinnell College poll released Tuesday revealed that the overwhelming majority of Americans believe asking a foreign leader to interfere in U.S. elections is wrong.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.