Republican Sen. Martha McSally of Arizona has undergone an abrupt shift on impeachment, from celebrating it as a “kamikaze mission” by Democrats to taking her role in the matter “very seriously.”
A couple of weeks ago, McSally, who is up for reelection in 2020, envisioned a Democratic rout at the polls and promised, “Literally, they’re on a path to reelect the president, keep the Senate majority and flip the House.” She also stood alongside Vice President Mike Pence at an event at which he touted Donald Trump’s pressure campaign to get Ukraine to investigate the Bidens.
That was then. This was Monday: “This is not a joke. It’s not a game,” she said, according to AZCentral.com. “And for our country going forward and the standards that we have related to this process, I take my role very seriously. And I think that’s what my constituents want me to do. And so, I am going to, when information is presented to me that’s been investigated by people who are not being partisan, we will share and be in our role going forward.”
Sure, McSally put a partisan spin on the matter, assailing House Democrats for having “political motives” while praising the Senate Intelligence Committee as “pretty bipartisan and thoughtful.” She also ducked questions about whether Trump’s effort to extort Ukraine was appropriate. But the bottom line is that McSally has undergone a pretty dramatic turn in a very short space of time. Can’t imagine what her internal polling is saying, but it can’t be good for her or Trump.
Another GOP senator also signaled an openness this week to weighing Trump’s wrongdoing. Though she decried a rush to judgment on both sides, Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski said she’s following the “process” and looking for “facts on the ground” before making a determination. “I’m also trying to think to myself, if this set of facts were to be in front of me and the president was President Hillary Clinton as opposed to President Donald Trump, would I be viewing this in a different way? Because if I do, that’s wrong. I shouldn’t view whether what is right and what is wrong based on the political affiliation of the individual that we are considering,” Murkowski said.
Given her history, Murkowski may actually be taking Trump’s malfeasance seriously. McSally, on the other hand, clearly has her finger in the wind, and the winds have shifted.