Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., said on “Fox & Friends” that he plans to introduce a measure to dismiss impeachment on Monday if House Speaker Nancy Pelosi continues to withhold articles of impeachment against President Trump from the Senate.
“Nancy Pelosi is attempting to obstruct a Senate trial. That's all there is to it,” Hawley, who serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee, told host Steve Doocy on Monday, adding that the Senate rules need to be changed.
“The Constitution says that the Senate is the one that will have the trial. It says the trial will follow the impeachment,” Hawley noted. “Now she’s trying to prevent us in a trial. She’s trying to obstruct it, she’s trying to upend the Constitution.”
“So here's what I think needs to happen. We need to change the Senate rules to allow the Senate to dismiss this case if she refuses to send the articles over,” he continued.
Pelosi surprised many in Washington last month with her decision to withhold articles -- which accused Trump of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress over his dealings with Ukraine -- as she sought to pressure the Senate to agree to certain terms for a trial. In an unusual news conference, Pelosi, D-Calif., defended her decision while calling Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., a “rogue leader.”
McConnell last month said Pelosi’s delay in sending articles of impeachment was an “absurd” position to take, saying the speaker “apparently believes she can tell us how to run the trial.”
“In a normal courtroom, in a real world, if the prosecutor does not try his or her case, if they don't actually bring it forward to the court, then the defendant can say, ‘Alright, well then we’re dismissing the case.’ The court can say, ‘We’re dismissing the case,’” Hawley said.
“And, in this instance, the Senate is the court and it's time for us to take action to say, ‘If you are not going to prosecute your case, we’re throwing it out.’”
He added that the “The Senate is ready to proceed. I think every Republican is ready to proceed to a trial right now.”
He said the “one reason” the trial isn’t taking place “as we speak” is because “Nancy Pelosi is disrespecting the Constitution.”
“We just can’t allow this to happen,” Hawley told Doocy. “I mean a purely, 100 percent partisan impeachment has led to this circus, this charade and now she wants it to extend forever, apparently.”
He went on to say, “Here’s what scares me, Steve. We could be sitting here in October of this year and Nancy Pelosi could still be sitting on the articles, or when the president gets reelected, as I believe he will, we could see her still holding on to the articles to try and obstruct a second term. I mean, if the Senate doesn't act, then there’s no end in sight.”