Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), an outspoken critic of her own party, conceded that the House impeachment against President Donald Trump will further “embolden” the president and thereby increase the “likelihood” that he will remain president for the next five years.
Gabbards statement comes after she was criticized by her party for being the only Democrat who voted “present” on the two articles of impeachment.
“First, we all know that Trump is not going to be found guilty and removed from the office by the U.S. Senate. Its not going to happen,” Gabbard said in a video on Dec. 30.
“Second, the impeachment in my view, will actually increase his support amongst voters, and its going to make him harder to defeat.”
In 2020, we will have a new president in the White House. How many of you do NOT want that to be Donald Trump? I certainly dont. Unfortunately, the House impeachment of the president has greatly increased the likelihood Trump will remain the president for the next 5 years … pic.twitter.com/FRRlbWHyo7
— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) December 31, 2019
Gabbard added that the House impeachment has also increased the likelihood that Republicans will take over the House of Representatives.
“Im really concerned that because of this House impeachment, we will end up not only with Donald Trump as president from 2020 to 2024—well actually end up with a Republican controlled Senate and a Republican controlled House,” she said.
Criticism and Praise
Former Hawaii governor and fellow Democrat Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii) criticized Gabbard for not voting in favor of Trumps impeachment and called for Gabbards resignation, reported the Huffington Post.
Additionally, on Dec. 24 Gabbard was noticeably absent from a new “unity” fundraising advertisement produced by the Democratic National Committee.
Despite being snubbed by her own party, Gabbard was praised by president Trump for voting “present” on impeachment. Gabbard told ABC News that her vote was “not a decision of neutrality,” rather it was “standing up for the people of this country and our ability to move forward together.”
“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,” Gabbard said in a statement.
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) December 19, 2019