Pressuring Ukraine For Biden Dirt Was ‘A Long Way’ From Impeachable, GOP Sen Asserts

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) speaks to reporters at the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump continues on January 31, 2020. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
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February 1, 2020 6:10 p.m.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) said in a new interview set to air Sunday that President Donald Trump’s actions have been proven, but that they are “a long way” from impeachable.

Alexander’s vote, along with 50 of his Senate Republican colleagues’, tipped the scales against the Senate hearing new witnesses at President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial.

In a statement accompanying the announcement of his vote Thursday, Alexander said that the “there is no need for more evidence to prove something that has already been proven and that does not meet the United States Constitution’s high bar for an impeachable offense.”

Alexander essentially acknowledged in the statement, and in a new interview with NBC News’ Chuck Todd that’s set to air in full Sunday, that the House managers were successful in proving their case.

“He called the President of Ukraine and asked him to become involved in investigating Joe Biden,” Alexander said in the interview, referring to Trump. “Second thing, was that at least in part, he delayed the military and other assistance to Ukraine in order to encourage that investigation.”

In his statement, Alexander called Trump’s behavior “inappropriate.” To Todd, he added that Trump “shouldn’t have done it.”

“I think it was wrong […] improper, crossing the line.”

But it wasn’t enough for impeachment, said the senator, who is retiring in 2020.

“I think what he did is a long way from treason, bribery, high crimes and misdemeanors,” Alexander said. “I don’t think it’s the kind of inappropriate action that the framers would expect the Senate to substitute its judgement for the people in picking a president.”

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