In a series of tweets, Trump claimed he was “never a fan” of Amash, who first won his House seat in the 2010 Republican wave election. A libertarian, Amash has been one of the GOP’s most vocal Trump critics.
“A total lightweight who opposes me and some of our great Republican ideas and policies just for the sake of getting his name out there,” Trump said of Amash. “Justin is a loser who sadly plays right into our opponents hands!”
Amash, whose reliably Republican district encompasses the city of Grand Rapids, won reelection last November by more than 11 percentage points.
Trump in his tweets continued to falsely claim special counsel Robert Mueller’s recently released report definitively stated no collusion occurred between Trump’s 2016 campaign and Russia. The president also falsely stated, as he has done previously, that the report determined he did not obstruct justice as Mueller investigated the matter.
Though Mueller wrote that his probe did not find evidence of criminal conspiracy, his report outlined extensive contacts between Trump’s campaign and Russian operatives who sought to influence the election. He also outlined 10 instances of potential obstruction by the president while declining to determine whether he should face charges. Attorney General Bill Barr ― Trump’s appointee ― then declared the evidence did not support charging the president with a crime.
Amash broke from his fellow Republicans in Congress in a flurry of tweets Saturday, saying he believes the full 448-page Mueller report suggests Trump “engaged in impeachable conduct.”
“When loyalty to a political party or to an individual trumps loyalty to the Constitution, the Rule of Law—the foundation of liberty—crumbles,” he tweeted.
Amash also accused Barr of deliberately misrepresenting Mueller’s report.
“Barr’s misrepresentations are significant but often subtle, frequently taking the form of sleight-of-hand qualifications or logical fallacies, which he hopes people will not notice.” he wrote.
Despite Democrats’ repeated requests, Barr has so far refused to release an unredacted version of Mueller’s report and its underlying evidence.
Apart from Amash, Republicans have shied away from forcefully condemning Trump’s actions as outlined in the Mueller report, let alone calling for his impeachment.
Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) on Sunday described Amash’s tweets as “courageous,” but said he ultimately disagrees with the Michigan lawmaker on impeachment.
″An impeachment call is not only something that relates to the law, but also considers practicality and politics, and the American people just aren’t there,” Romney said on CNN’s “State Of The Union.”
“I think those who are considering impeachment have to look also at the jury, which would be the Senate,” he said. “The [GOP-controlled] Senate is certainly not there either. ... As I read the [Mueller] report, I was troubled by it, it was very disappointing for a number of reasons, but it did not suggest to me that this was time to call for impeachment.”
This story had been updated with details on Amash’s district.