WASHINGTON, DC (WPTA21)- Congressman Jim Banks says he voted not to impeach President Trump because he felt it would divide the country.
"Joe Biden will be inaugurated one week from today and instead of trying to bring the country together after a tumultuous time in history, Democrats are dividing America even further," Banks said.
Banks was one of the 197 Republicans who voted against impeachment, but there were 10 Republicans who voted 'yes'. One of them was Rep. Dan Newhouse of Washington.
"Last week, there was a domestic threat at the door of the Capitol and he did nothing to stop it. That is why with a heavy heart and clear resolve, I will vote yes on these articles of impeachment," Newhouse said.
Banks says President Trump is not to blame for the riots at the capitol last week. Many Democrats say the president's rhetoric incited the violence but Banks doesn't agree with that.
"The president was clear in his speech, I've watched it over and over, I've read the transcript he told his supporters to go to the capitol, make your voices heard and do it peacefully, he was clear about that," Banks said.
Banks believes that instead of focusing on impeaching the president, congress should try to find out how the attack on the capitol happened in the first place.
"I and many others have called for a bipartisan commission to study the activities of what happened a week ago on January 6th…why security was so weak at the capitol that allowed it to happen and find out who's responsible and then we can take action from there," Banks said.
Banks says he believes there will be a peaceful transfer of power and once Joe Biden is sworn in congress can go back to serving the people.
"I hope we can all come to our senses after we're done with this and start rebuilding America, bringing America back together and I have high hopes that that process can begin soon," Banks said.