‘There’s no role for Congress’: Rep. Tom Cole (R-Oklahoma) on Donald Trump
Posted: Tuesday, January 12, 2021
Rep. Tom Cole (R-Oklahoma) addresses the possible removal of Donald Trump from office during a meeting of the House Committee on Rules on January 12, 2021. Cole, a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation, condemned the violence that occurred on January 6 as lawmakers were certifying the results of the presidential election. Supporters of Trump, who lost the vote, stormed the U.S. Capitol, contributing to the loss of lives. "It was horrific day, an unacceptable day in American history, a sobering day and one full of tragedy that will cast a long shadow of the Congress in the weeks and months and, frankly, years ahead," Cole said at the meeting. But Cole, who is the highest-ranking Republican on the committee, did not mention Trump by name once during his opening remarks. He also did not acknowledge how the outgoing president played a role in inciting violence at the nation's capital. Instead, Cole spoke out against H.Res.21, which calls on Vice President Mike Pence to start a process to remove Trump from office. He called the measure "misguided" and said it was "inappropriate for the legislative branch to pursue" under the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. "There’s no role for Congress," Cole said of Pence's ability to invoke the 25th Amendment. Later in the meeting, Cole asked a fellow Republican whether Pence, who perviously served in Congress, could be trusted to determine whether Trump should remain in office. "So you trust him to make the judgment?" Cole asked Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio). "Mike Pence is a good guy. I trust him," Jordan responded. Cole and Jordan were among the 147 Republican lawmakers who voted against certifying the results of the election. They did so even after witnessing the violence of January 6.