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Stefanik calls on Pelosi to hold vote on Trump impeachment

Tom Magnarelli
WRVO News File Photo
Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-Schuylerville) at a town hall in Lowville Thursday.

North Country Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-Schuylerville) is standing firm against impeaching President Donald Trump. At a town hall in Lewis County, Stefanik called on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to hold a vote on impeachment, so the public knows where their representatives stand on the issue. 

A whistleblower complaint, and a summary of a phone call showing Trump asked the Ukrainian president to investigate Trump’s political rival, Joe Biden, has led to the current impeachment inquiry. Stefanik said it’s illegal for any elected official to ask for help from a foreign nation with their campaign. But she said that’s not what happened here.

“There was no quid pro quo,” Stefanik said. “There was no favor asked. Impeachment is not a political buzzword. This is a very, very serious matter. And I have not seen evidence of high crimes and misdemeanors.”

Stefanik said the reason Pelosi hasn’t held a vote on impeachment yet, is because she’s protecting Democratic members in the House that are in districts Trump won in 2016. Stefanik said a vote is necessary to set rules, and give both parties an opportunity to call witnesses. 

“Right now Republicans have no say,” Stefanik said. “We have not been able to call a single witness as part of this, to make sure that we’re getting all of the information.”

Stefanik has also called on Rep. Adam Schiff to step down as chair of the House Intelligence Committee, which she sits on, for reasons that include, hearing and withholding information about the whistleblower, before the complaint was filed.

Credit Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News
Jenny Crowther (standing), speaks during a towh hall meeting in Lowville Thursday

At Stefanik's town hall in Lowville, Steven Blow, a lifelong registered Democrat who supports Trump, agreed with Stefanik on impeachment.

“Put it to a vote, get it all out in the open,” Blow said. "They want to go after Trump for what he said on the phone? That's great, I have no problem with that. As long as the other side gets to expose what's going on for corruption on that end also." 

Jenny Crowther, who’s voted Republican all her life, did not vote for Trump, and wishes Stefanik would be more aggressive on Trump’s tweets and his business dealings.

Not all the questions at the town hall were about Trump. Other topics included lowering the cost of prescription drugs and the struggles of small dairy farms.

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York.