'I didn’t take an oath to defend Trump': This conservative South Carolina Republican is now branded a 'traitor'
Although some Republicans in Congress have had the courage to condemn former President Donald Trump for the January 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol Building — including Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah and Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois — many other Republicans are afraid to say one word against Dear Leader. Republicans in red states who stand up to Trump are likely to face an aggressive GOP primary challenge, and the political future of Rep. Tom Rice — who voted to impeach Trump following the January 6 attack — is the focus of an article by Washington Post reporter Marianna Sotomayor.
Rice is not known for being a Never Trumper. The South Carolina Republican was very pro-Trump in the past, but after the January 6 insurrection, he finally drew the line.
Sotomayor explains, "As a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, Rice helped draft what became the party's hallmark 2017 tax cut legislation. He supported building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. He supported Trump's tariffs on Chinese goods. He defended Trump during his first impeachment, saying, 'He has been the target of an astounding barrage of lies, deceit, and corruption.' And he objected to certifying the 2020 election results from Pennsylvania and Arizona that Trump falsely said were fraudulent. But on January 13, Rice shocked Washington and voters…. He voted to impeach Trump on charges he incited the deadly January 6 attack on the Capitol."
The South Carolina congressman, now 63, was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2012. After Trump lost to now-President Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election, Rice promoted the Big Lie — and in December 2020, he signed an amicus brief in support of Texas v. Pennsylvania, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton's appalling lawsuit that tried to throw out the democratic election results in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
But on January 6, Rice finally had an attack of conscience. And after he voted in favor of Trump's second impeachment, the South Carolina GOP voted to formally censure him. On top of that, Rice is facing GOP primary challenges in the 2022 election.
The congressman told the Post, "It was very clear to me, I took an oath to defend the Constitution. I didn't take an oath to defend Donald Trump. What he did was a frontal assault on the Constitution."
Rice jokingly added, "What do you call somebody who votes with Trump 99% of the time? A traitor."
One of the things that turned Rice against Trump on January 6, he told the Post, was a tweet attacking then-Vice President Mike Pence. Trump tweeted that Pence didn't have "the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution."
The Post quotes Rice as saying, "To me, that is completely despicable…. For him to be calling Mike Pence a coward and him sitting at the White House surrounded by Secret Service and tweeting while Mike Pence is in the middle of all that, and he's a coward? Give me a break…. If the president, by force, can intimidate Congress into voting their way, then we might as well do away with Congress and hand it over to a king. What he did, in my mind, is what dictators do."
A driver fatally ran down one woman and injured another person at a protest in Minneapolis over the police killing of a Black man.
"People were having a joyous time and then for that to happen, like you know people are still kind of reeling in from that," said one witness. "It's a tragedy for sure."
"You got 15 squad cars showing up, and they're hopping out in riot gear before an ambulance shows up," the witness added. "That adds to the already intense and stressful situation."
NOW: This is the scene near Hennepin and Lake where we’re told just before midnight a vehicle drove into a group of… https://t.co/VYradU3vUW— Dave Peterlinz (@Dave Peterlinz) 1623651684.0
Two protesters were taken to a nearby hospital, where a woman was later pronounced dead, and the second person was treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
Some of the protesters pulled the man from his car and began hitting him before police took him into custody, and the driver was also treated at the hospital for his injuries.
Police said they believe alcohol or drugs may be involved in the crash.
The driver's name has not been released, and police have not said what charges he might face.
More than 100 people were struck by cars last year during Black Lives Matter protests, and Republican legislatures in multiple states have introduced measures that would grant immunity to drivers who strike and injure protesters with their vehicles.
Car crashes into protesters in Uptown
Car crashes into protesters in Uptown www.kare11.com
Police say the suspect drove into a group of people near West Lake Street and Girard Avenue South.
CNN Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr on Monday broke her silence about revelations that the United States Department of Justice under former President Donald Trump issued sweeping subpoenas for her phone records.
While talking with hosts Briana Keilar and John Berman, Starr said she was "dumbfounded" by the broad scope of the subpoena issued for her records.
"We have no idea why the Justice Department snuck into my life," she said. "They went out, in secret court proceedings last year, they went after some 30,000 of my emails and phone records, and not just my work email, my work phone, they went after my personal accounts, my personal email, and my personal phone... they wanted all of it. And I was not allowed to know about it."
Starr, who also said there has been no indication that she is under any kind of criminal investigation, challenged current Attorney General Merrick Garland to publicly explain the DOJ's actions so she and other journalists can understand the rationale of such an invasive subpoena.
"Let me just say, as an American, I would like an answer about why the Justice Department... thought this was something that they could do," she said. "I would like an explanation."
Watch the video below.
Reporter targeted by Trump DOJ breaks her silence -- and says she wants answers www.youtube.com
Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Raw Story Investigates and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.
$95 / year — Just $7.91/month
I want to Support More
$14.99 per month