Republicans are distancing themselves from former Alaska governor Sarah Palin's calls for the impeachment of President Barack Obama, arguing to do so would be an act of "futility" and a distraction from the party's efforts to retake the Senate in November.
"It's time to impeach; and on behalf of American workers and legal immigrants of all backgrounds, we should vehemently oppose any politician on the left or right who would hesitate in voting for articles of impeachment," Palin wrote in an op-ed on Breitbart.com.
On Fox Business Network on Thursday, her running mate in the 2008 presidential election, Sen. John McCain disagreed.
"Well, I don't agree and I remember going through an impeachment of William Jefferson Clinton," McCain said. "There are not the votes here in the United States Senate to impeach the president of the United States and I think that we should focus our attention on winning elections. We win this election and we regain control of the United States Senate we can be far more effective than an effort to impeach the president, which has no chance of succeeding."
House Speaker John Boehner has also weighed in saying ""I disagree," when asked by reporters Wednesday morning.
On C-SPAN Thursday morning, Republican Rep. Blake Farenthold of Texas said it would be "an exercise in futility" for the House to vote to impeach President Obama.
"Assuming we could get the vote to impeach the president, he is not going to get convicted in the senate," he said, explaining, "Most people don't realize that the impeachment process starts in the House, when it passes articles of impeachment. Then there is a trial in the Senate and he won't be removed from office unless he is convicted in the Senate. The Senate won't even take up commonsense job bills. The chances they would actually impeach the president I think are between slim to none."
"I think it would be an exercise in futility for the House to do anything," Farenthold added.
Andrew Kaczynski is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
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