Rep. Tom Reed told reporters Thursday that he does not see evidence to “warrant the extreme measure” of impeachment.
“It’s a connect-the-dots type of assumption that the Democratic party has chosen to pursue to lead their impeachment efforts,” Reed said in his weekly media conference call. “We’re talking about going through a trial and putting the country through this exercise.”
Reed’s comments came after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the inquiry on Tuesday. During her weekly press conference in the Capitol Visitor Center, Pelosi said President Donald J. Trump "in his actions in a telephone call with a head of state betrayed his oath of office, our national security and the integrity of our elections."
Reed, who represents the Greater Olean area in Congress, said that based on what he is hearing, the House is focusing solely on the Ukraine situation in regard to the articles of impeachment. He said the evidence presented on the president’s involvement with Ukraine is not enough to support impeachment.
“If there’s new evidence down the road, of course we’ll follow it,” Reed said. “But given what we know, I don’t see a ‘smoking gun’ type of evidence that would deserve impeachment.”
Reed said he is concerned about how Pelosi is using her power with House majority.
“I am very concerned that they are going down this path,” Reed said. “When you talk about impeachment, you’re talking about overturning an election called by the will of the people of the United States.”
Reed also expressed concern about the House’s willingness to talk about “real issues,” saying, “We can’t be talking about impeachment 24/7.”
As far as his involvement in the impeachment process, Reed said, “We’re an interested party,” and that he would continue to look at the evidence presented.
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