Grand Strand Congressman Tom Rice broke with state and national Republican colleagues to be one of just 10 GOP members of Congress to support the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump passed by the U.S. House Wednesday.
“I have backed this President through thick and thin for four years. I campaigned for him and voted for him twice. But, this utter failure is inexcusable,” Rice said in a statement, referring to the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol last week.
As recently as Monday, Rice said he did not support impeachment. “Let’s not stoke further division,” he said, according to WBTW.
But since then, Rice pointed to the lack of contrition from Trump that might be one reason why he switched his position.
“The President has not addressed the nation to ask for calm. He has not visited the injured and grieving. He has not offered condolences. Yesterday in a press briefing at the border, he said his comments were ‘perfectly appropriate,'” Rice’s statement said.
All other South Carolina Republicans sided with the president against impeachment on Wednesday, including freshman U.S. Rep. Nancy Mace. Democratic Majority Whip James Clyburn was the only other S.C. member to support the measure.
In addition to Rice the other members who voted to impeach were Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, John Katko of New York, Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio, Fred Upton and Peter Meijer of Michigan, Jaime Herrera Beutler and Dan Newhouse of Washington state and David Valadao of California.
The articles now go to the U.S. Senate, where it’s unknown how or if Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will begin impeachment proceedings before Trump leaves office next week.