From Rubio’s statement published today on Medium:
As Manager Jerry Nadler (D-NY) reminded us Wednesday night, removal is not a punishment for a crime. Nor is removal supposed to be a way to hold Presidents accountable; that is what elections are for.
The sole purpose of this extraordinary power to remove the one person entrusted with all of the powers of an entire branch of government is to provide a last-resort remedy to protect the country. That is why Hamilton wrote that in these trials our decisions should be pursuing “the public good.”
Just because actions meet a standard of impeachment does not mean it is in the best interest of the country to remove a President from office.
Determining which outcome is in the best interests requires a political judgment — one that takes into account both the severity of the wrongdoing alleged but also the impact removal would have on the nation.
In his explanation for why he won’t vote to convict Trump, Rubio says he’s consistent because he didn’t support impeaching Obama over “damage he’s doing to our economy and our national security.” No mention of any actual wrongdoing that would have justified Obama being impeached.
— Abby D. Phillip (@abbydphillip) January 31, 2020
No substantive defense of Trump’s actions from Rubio but he argues it would be too divisive to remove a president along partisan lines. Of course if the Senate voted to remove Trump it would by definition be bipartisan because it requires 67 votes and there are only 47 Dems. https://t.co/rj5HVbVPAK
— Max Boot (@MaxBoot) January 31, 2020