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Charlie Baker on Trump Impeachment: Neither For Nor Against

December 21, 2019

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker is declining to take a side on the U.S. House of Representatives’ impeaching President Donald Trump, the Associated Press reports.

The Republican, who has said he did not vote for Trump or Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election, did not say where he stood on impeaching the president.

“That’s the decision they made,” he told WGBH News on Thursday, December 19. “I wish it had been a little more bipartisan but unfortunately we’re never going to get that out of this Washington.”

“That’s their call,” he added, speaking of the House of Representatives. “I wasn’t there.”

Now that Trump has been impeached, he will receive a trial in the Republican-controlled Senate. To be removed from office, 67 Senators would have to support removing him. But Republicans have a 53-to-47 majority, and so far not a single Republican senator has expressed support for voting to remove Trump from office.

Baker said he is hoping there is “a fair trial” in the Senate.

“It’s unfortunate that some of the Senate folks have already basically said what they’re going to do before the thing even starts, and that’s on both sides,” he said. “If you’re going to be a juror in one of these things the most important thing for you to do is to say nothing.”

In the past, Baker did say he felt as though Trump’s telephone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky in July should receive an investigation.

Baker also said he does not plan on supporting Trump in 2020.

“I didn’t support the president in the Republican primary,” he said. “I didn’t support him in the general election, and I said that I didn’t think he had the temperament for the job. And there’s nothing that’s happened in the course of the last few years that’s changed my mind.”

Baker has not yet formally endorsed Trump’s main Republican primary opponent, former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld.

Baker served as the state’s Secretary of Administration and Finance when Weld was governor of Massachusetts during the 1990s.

 

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