Two prominent Democratic Congresswomen have found themselves in a beef after freshman darling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blasted fellow Representative Tulsi Gabbard following the vote on two articles of impeachment for President Donald Trump.
The impeachment vote went largely along party lines, with only two Democratic votes on the first article and three votes on the second going towards “nay.” Then, there was Gabbard who voted “present” on both articles.
By refusing to take a stance, Gabbard opened herself to criticism and Ocasio-Cortez took the opening.
“Today was very consequential, and to not take a stand one way or another, on a day of such great consequence to this country, I think is quite difficult,” Ocasio-Cortez told reporters, according to the New York Post. “We are sent here to lead.”
Gabbard, however, issued a lengthy statement explaining her decision.
A house divided cannot stand. And today we are divided. Fragmentation and polarity are ripping our country apart. Today, I come before you to make a stand for the center, to appeal to all of you to bridge our differences and stand up for the American people. #StandWithTulsi pic.twitter.com/wAvu8PXNoB
— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) December 19, 2019
“After doing my due diligence in reviewing the 658-page impeachment report, I came to the conclusion that I could not in good conscience vote either yes or no,” the 2020 presidential candidate said. “I could not in good conscience vote against impeachment because I believe President Trump is guilty of wrongdoing.
“I also could not in good conscience vote for impeachment because removal of a sitting President must not be the culmination of a partisan process, fueled by tribal animosities that have so gravely divided our country.”
She added: “I am confident that the American people will decide to deliver a resounding rebuke of President Trump’s innumerable improprieties and abuses. And they will express that judgment at the ballot box. That is the way real and lasting change has always occurred in this great country: through the forcefully expressed will of the people. So today, I come before you to make a stand for the center, to appeal to all of you to bridge our differences and stand up for the American people.
“My vote today is a vote for much-needed reconciliation and hope that together we can heal our country. Let’s work side-by-side, seeking common ground, to usher in a bright future for the American people, our country, and our nation.”
Despite her explanation, the progressive wing of the party continued to slam Gabbard and had #TulsiCoward as one of the top trending topics in the United States. We will have to see whether her stance on the Trump impeachment helps or ultimately harms her candidacy for the Oval Office.