A member of Donald Trump’s official impeachment team warned Monday that Republican senators who vote against Trump at the impeachment trial will pay a serious political price.
Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), a close Trump ally, told CBS News, “I mean listen, I don’t want to speak for my Senate colleagues. But there are always political repercussions for every vote you take.”
“There is no vote that is higher profile than this,” he added.
The comments come just days after an array of Senate Republicans criticized House Intelligence Chair Adam Schiff, one of several Democratic impeachment managers, for virtually arguing the same thing.
On Friday, as he was wrapping up the House managers’ case, Schiff (D-CA) reminded lawmakers that an earlier CBS News report had quoted a Trump confidant as saying that, if GOP senators voted against Trump in the impeachment trial, their “head will be on a pike.”
Schiff acknowledged that he did not know if the report was accurate and said he hoped it was not true.
Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), who by Senate rules is not allowed to speak in the trial, shook her head no and announced that the claim was “not true.”
Sen. Jim Lankford (R-OK) denounced Schiff’s remark, saying it was “insulting and demeaning to everyone to say that we somehow live in fear and that the president has threatened all of us.”
Sen. Lisa Murkowksi (R-AK) told reporters that Schiff had “crossed the line” and that he had “lost” her with that comment.
Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) went a step further claiming, “No Republican senator has been told that.”
“What [Schiff] has proven to all of us is, he is capable of falsehoods and will tell it to the country, and would tell it to us when we are sitting in the Senate chamber, when every one of us knows it is not true,” Barrasso said.
On Sunday, Trump publicly threatened Schiff, calling him “a CORRUPT POLITICIAN, and probably a very sick man.”
“He has not paid the price, yet, for what he has done to our Country!” Trump tweeted.
Asked later about those remarks, Schiff told NBC’s “Meet the Press” that he believed the tweet was indeed “intended to be” a threat, but doubled down on his previous comments.
“It is going to be very difficult for some of these senators to stand up to this president. It really is. There’s no question about it,” he said.
He added that he didn’t “want to acknowledge it in a way that is offensive to them” but hoped to “speak candidly about it.”
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.