A Republican member of Congress says he's read the Mueller report and that Donald Trump committed impeachable offenses – a statement that some are viewing as more self-promotion than anything else.
Congressman Justin Amash (R-Michigan) (pictured) made the surprising announcement over the weekend when he tweeted out four "principle conclusions" after reading the entire redacted Mueller report. Among them, that President Trump "engaged in impeachable conduct." He is the first Republican to publicly reach that conclusion.
Trump advisor Dr. Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Dallas, is downplaying the declaration. "I think he [Amash] has a history of trying to make a name for himself and trying to be at odds with the president," he tells OneNewsNow. "This isn't going to go anywhere."
Likewise, according to Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy. "It's not the first time that politicians have done things for purposes of self-promotion, heaven knows – but it seems to be a particularly egregious example of that," he shares.
But Democrats – starting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi – and the media are making a big deal of it, hoping against hope it's the first of many defections from Republican support of President Trump. Gaffney points out that Pelosi has been hesitant to pull the impeachment card – but that Amash may be giving her reason to press ahead.
"She's looking at this as an indication of the possibility that there may be some other Republicans who would give her and her team some political cover," Gaffney suggests.
He says it's unlikely that any more Republicans will leave the side of a very successful president.
"A lot of what Donald Trump has been doing has been very conservative," says Gaffney. "I would argue that on balance it's the most conservative presidency since Reagan or maybe including President Reagan's, in which I had the privilege of serving."
For four years, Gaffney held the position of deputy assistant secretary of defense for nuclear forces and arms control under the Reagan administration.
Because of Amash's tweets against the president, his primary opponent – Republican State Representative Jim Lower – announced his challenge to Amash earlier than planned. Lower describes himself as "pro-Trump" and says he was originally going to declare his candidacy on July 4.