Fox News reported just over two years ago that then-President Donald Trump decried his two impeachments as “a hoax” and called for them to be expunged.
Judging from what newly elected House Speaker Kevin McCarthy had to say last week, the former president may get his wish.
Republicans will “look it” expungement
According to Fox News, McCarthy discussed the issue with reporters during a press conference last Thursday on Capitol Hill.
“When you watch what he went through, I would understand why members would want to bring that forward,” McCarthy said of Trump’s impeachments.
“Our first priority is to get our economy back on track, secure our borders, make our streets safe again, give parents the opportunity to have a say in their education, and actually hold government accountable,” he stressed before adding, “But I understand why individuals want to do it, and we’d look at it.”
Fox News noted in March that Oklahoma Republican Rep. Markwayne Mullin introduced a resolution that would expunge Trump’s first impeachment, which took place in 2019.
Democrats abused Constitution
“Impeaching a sitting president is the most serious action Congress can take, and our Constitution is extremely clear on what is an impeachable offense,” Mullin told the network.
“Democrats abused our Constitution for their political gain,” he alleged, insisting, “We cannot allow this behavior to go unanswered.”
“My resolution is about restoring credibility to the impeachment process and ensuring a political play like this never happens again,” the Oklahoma lawmaker stressed.
Trump was first impeached in 2019 for “abuse of power” after a phone call with Ukrainian Volodymyr Zelenskyy and was impeached again in 2021 following the January 6 riot on Capitol Hill. Both impeachments ended with acquittals in the Senate.
Legal experts divided over whether impeachment can be expunged
Newsweek pointed out last week that if Republicans are successful then Trump would be the first president to have an impeachment expunge. Still, legal experts are divided over whether such a move is even possible.
Indiana University law professor Gerard Magliocca was quoted as saying in 2019 that he was “hard-pressed to see why the House is bound by an impeachment passed by a prior one.”
“This is different from an impeachment and a conviction,” he continued. “The Senate’s judgment in impeachment trials is final. The impeachment itself, though, is not different from any other House resolution.”
However, Georgetown University Law Center told Newsweek, “My argument would be that an impeachment cannot be expunged because it has effect outside of the House—that is, it causes the Senate to hold a trial.”