Former Rep. Bob Barr (R-GA), who led the charge to impeach former President Bill Clinton, told NBC’s Chuck Todd on Friday that he also wasn’t joking around about wanting to impeach President Barack Obama.
Barr is now running for Congress to replace Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-GA), who is vying for a U.S. Senate seat. Todd played audio of Barr saying he’d like to impeach Obama in the same way he impeached former President Bill Clinton.
“I was with some folks just recently and pulled out a file in my office, the house resolution, the house resolution that I introduced on Nov. 5 of 1997. That was the very first official inquiry of impeachment filed against Bill Clinton,” Barr says in the recording of a radio appearance. “And what I did is I took that, took that document, figuratively kind of dusted it off, added a little bit of language to it, and darn if it doesn’t sound pretty good with Barack Obama’s name in there.”
“Why even joke about impeachment as you did on that radio show?” Todd asked. “Is that the type of divisive politics you think that we need in Washington?”
“Chuck, I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he responded. “That wasn’t a joke. I was asked a question about impeachment, and I answered it very seriously.”
“To claim that President Clinton was impeached for picadillos is nonsense,” Barr continued. “He was impeached for obstruction of justice and perjury. That may not be important to you, but to those of us in the House, the majority in the House, it was important.”
Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.