If there’s one Republican on the House Intelligence Committee who Democrats could reasonably hope would vote to impeach President Donald Trump, it’s Representative Will Hurd of Texas. But even he isn’t sold yet.
Hurd, a moderate former CIA analyst who announced this summer that he would not seek reelection next year, joined every other House Republican in voting against a package of rules for the impeachment inquiry last month. But he had been more open-minded than most of his colleagues and gave little indication of his leanings during the committee’s hearings over the past two weeks. His questions of witnesses were serious and not overtly partisan, neither adopting the dismissive tone of his fellow Republicans toward impeachment nor signaling the alarm that Democrats have at the revelations so far.
This afternoon, however, Hurd used his allotted five minutes to update everyone on his thinking. “An impeachable offense should be compelling, overwhelmingly clear, and unambiguous. And it’s not something to be rushed or taken lightly,” Hurd said. “I have not heard evidence proving the president committed bribery or extortion.”
The representative’s short speech was in the vein of a pox on both your houses. He said that during the July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Trump’s mention of former Vice President Joe Biden and his request that Zelensky do him “a favor” by investigating him was “inappropriate, misguided foreign policy.”