Tulsi Gabbard’s chances at becoming the 2020 Democratic nominee for President were never really all that great, but her impeachment vote likely just sealed the deal.
Last night, during what was an undeniably historic moment for the United States, the Congresswoman from Hawaii did not vote “yes” on either of the articles of impeachment laid out before her. She also didn’t vote “no”. Gabbard, unlike anyone else in the room, voted “present”.
No, that’s not a typo, and the Twitterverse gave her an earful about it.
Do you solemnly swear that you will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic?
— Georgia Voter (@GeorgiaBlue2019) December 19, 2019
i can't wait for President Gabbard.
"Ma'am we might have to go to war, what do you say?"
President Gabbard – "Present!"#VotePresentLikeTulsi
— SlipScreen1 (@Screen1Slip) December 19, 2019
Clerk: Would you like fries with that?
— Viking Cat Space Force ¯_(ツ)_/¯ (@realVikingCat) December 19, 2019
Gabbard then attempted to double down on her choice during an interview with The Hill’s Krystal Ball:
KRYSTAL BALL: Tell us what your thought process was here? How did you come to this decision?
REP. TULSI GABBARD: First of all, throughout my life, whether it was through serving in the military and in the different decisions that I’ve made in Congress, I always think about what’s in the best interest of the country. People will agree sometimes with those decisions or disagree with those decisions. But my motivation is always coming from a deep love of country. That’s where, after doing my due diligence and going through the exhaustive report that was put out and the conclusion of the inquiry, I could not in good conscience vote either “yes” or “no.”
A “no” vote was unacceptable for me Donald Trump is absolutely guilty of wrongdoing. A “yes” vote was unacceptable to me because impeachment should never come about as a culmination of a highly partisan process. This is something that our founding [fathers] warned us about. Alexander Hamilton wrote very clearly about how his concern that the impeachment outcome would be determined by the strength of one part or another, rather than an examination of innocence or guilt. That’s why I believe so strongly that making this statement, voting “present,” taking a stand for the center, standing for our democracy and really that this decision of whether to remove Donald Trump or not must be in the hands of voters. I believe that they will make that decision.
Gabbard is currently polling at 1.7% nationally, according to Real Clear Politics.
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