Even before the impeachment inquiry commenced, Donald Trump thought to call House Democrats the “Do-nothing Democrats,” who were out to simply get him for some imaginary crimes and not co-sponsor any more Republican donor class tax cuts. Now, he’s got to think up a new nickname. Republicans who once despaired impeachment because it was preventing them from getting any work done (despite the fact that Mitch McConnell has blocked over 400 bills from the Senate floor), are now lamenting that Democrats are working on legislation despite being in the middle of an impeachment inquiry.
On Monday, Republicans on the House Oversight Committee took to Twitter to protest a classified briefing from the FBI that will overlap with the first impeachment hearing to be held by the House Judiciary Committee this week. It’s interesting that Republicans chose to complain about this of all things, since the classified briefing will concern election interference. It shouldn’t come as any surprise for members of Congress that with there being dozens of House committees, any number of them tend to meet at the same time, and House representatives are often forced to decide which one to skip. Or they can simply leave one briefing early to go to another one, depending on what’s being covered. The thing is, there are 18 Republicans on the oversight panel, and only three are also members of the House Judiciary Committee – Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Kelly Armstrong of North Dakota, and Greg Steube of Florida.
While the committee complained about how Democrats unrealistically expect them to be in two places at once, Armstrong has only been present at four out of 17 closed door hearings where transcripts were released, while Steube attended none of them, which is why his name looks the least familiar. Jordan went to 15, but just last month, he didn’t seem to have any issues with impeachment that would keep him from jumping onboard another committee. The reason he just recently joined House Intelligence is, of course, so he could play lookout for Donald Trump.
It should be clear to anyone at least mildly paying attention by this point that Republicans are truly not interested in passing legislation to improve the lives of their constituents – at least not as much as protecting power for themselves – but this is probably the most blatant example of how they truly feel.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making