The partisan divide over impeachment comes as no surprise. But a bit of a gap has also opened up between the Tennessee senators who are engaged in the impeachment trial.
For his part, Sen. Lamar Alexander says the process doesn’t have to become a “circus.”
“It should assure the American people that we are giving the articles from the House of Representatives a full and fair hearing,” he said in a video posted to Twitter.
Alexander is even willing to consider witness testimony as part of the process. He has said he wants to hear the arguments, ask questions and vote on whether the senate should seek additional evidence. Only four Republican senators have agreed to the idea of new witnesses.
Just because the U.S. House was a circus doesn't mean the Senate needs to be.
We're approaching the impeachment trial according to our constitutional responsibilities—assuring the American people that we're giving the articles from the House a full and fair hearing. pic.twitter.com/WwV38DR0WU
— Sen. Lamar Alexander (@SenAlexander) January 16, 2020
Meanwhile, Sen. Marsha Blackburn has frequently called the process a sham. She also called for all of the senators running for president to recuse themselves from the process.
“I do not think it is possible for them to fulfill their oath of impartiality if they are going to be running against him,” she told FOX News.
Tennessee’s representatives in the U.S. House have been predictably partisan.
Democratic Congressman Jim Cooper, for example, defended the House’s decision to wait 28 days before finalizing the articles of impeachment. He said evidence has mounted against the president during that time.
“We should just hope and pray that enough senators try to do the right thing to protect the Constitution and our country,” he said in a Twitter video.
Earlier today, the House voted to send the Articles of Impeachment against the president to the Senate, where the trial will be held. Here are my thoughts on the process: pic.twitter.com/g8ZwhnjTnW
— Jim Cooper (@repjimcooper) January 15, 2020
Republican Congressman Scott DesJarlais called impeachment a waste of time.
The parties are also divided over the impeachment managers selected by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Democrat Steve Cohen praised those chosen as “seasoned litigators,” while Republican Mark Green cast the group as partisans made up their minds about impeachment before seeing any facts.