Ohio G.O.P. Censure Representative Who Voted to Impeach Trump

Ohio G.O.P. Censure Representative Who Voted to Impeach Trump

The Ohio Republican Party censured Representative Anthony Gonzalez on Friday and called for his resignation for voting to impeach former President Donald J. Trump in January.

Bob Paduchik, the chairman of the Ohio Republican Party, called Mr. Trump’s impeachment “an unconstitutional, politically motivated process that served no purpose.”

“Republicans and Democratic members alike have the right to vote in any way they so choose,” Mr. Paduchik said in a statement. “This committee also has a right to stand on principle and conviction.”

Mr. Gonzalez is the latest Republican lawmaker to face backlash for voting to impeach Mr. Trump for inciting the deadly Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol, joining just nine other House Republicans. State Republican parties have also voted to censure Senators Richard Burr of North Carolina and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana for voting to convict Mr. Trump in the Senate.

The censure vote also comes as Republicans try to oust Representative Liz Cheney from their leadership ranks. Ms. Cheney, who voted to impeach Mr. Trump in January, has been vocal about wanting to distance the Republican Party from the former president and his election lies.

After the Capitol riot, Mr. Gonzalez said he had spent days trying to make sense of the event and had concluded that Mr. Trump “helped organize and incite a mob that attacked the United States Congress.”

“During the attack itself, the president abandoned his post while many members asked for help, thus further endangering all present,” Mr. Gonzalez said at the time. “These are fundamental threats not just to people’s lives but to the very foundation of our republic.”

Mr. Gonzalez’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

His primary challenger, the former Trump aide Max Miller, lauded the censure vote on Friday and said the Ohio Republican Party was holding Mr. Gonzalez accountable for “abandoning his constituents.” Mr. Trump has endorsed Mr. Miller.

“Regardless if he resigns or not, we are going to continue spreading our strong, pro-Trump, America First message to every corner of this district,” Mr. Miller wrote on Twitter.

The censure vote also drew praise from Republican primary candidates in Ohio’s Senate race, which may be crucial in determining control of the chamber in 2022.

Josh Mandel, a former Ohio state treasurer, wrote in a tweet on Friday, “Anthony Gonzalez should be eradicated from the Republican Party.” He also criticized his opponent Jane Timken for initially defending Mr. Gonzalez.

“I fully agree with the censure of Anthony Gonzalez,” Ms. Timken, a former chairwoman of the Ohio Republican Party, wrote on Twitter on Friday. “The impeachment was a sham that betrayed the Constitution and went against Ohioans’ interests.”

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