A Special Conversation with Congressman Ritchie Torres


Representative ritchie. Torres is a freshman member of congress. From new york's fifteenth congressional district. He is proudly progressive and proudly pro israel and we had hoped to have him on to talk about how important it is to make that progressive case for israel the riot at the capitol changed our plans unfortunately and he joins us now to talk about what comes next representative torres so much for joining us and honor for me to be here. Last wednesday was extremely scary for all of us. But i can't even imagine what it would have been like to be in the capital for it and we're also not entirely out of the woods yet with possible. Threats still brewing. Think so let me start here and just ask this. How are you holding up. It has been the most draining and disorienting week of my life. If a year ago you had said that. I would become a member of congress during infectious disease outbreak and that i would witness of violent insurrection against the us capital during the electoral college. Vote count and that i would then impeach donald trump. Not only once but twice. I would have said that has the feel of movie. I'm still in a state of shock. And i'm in a state of shock that a sitting president would instigate a violent mob to storm the us capital in an attempt to overturn the results of a presidential election. You are among the members of congress calling for the house to impeach president trump again. Although i suppose this is your first time impeaching him and that's a process that looks set to move forward this week. People are also talking about a resolution censuring ham or demanding resigned or using the twenty fifth or the fourteenth amendment's to remove him from office. What would satisfy you hear. What kind of action do you think that this moment calls for will. The best outcome is removal. And we've presented the vice president would alternate him. Is you invoke the twenty fifth amendment or else. We have no choice but to move forward with impeachment. It is clear that the vice president refuses to invoke the twenty fifth amendment in conjunction with a majority of the cabinet so we have no choice but to impeach donald trump the violent mob. He unleashed on the. Us capital represents unprecedented assault on the separation of powers between the congress and the president. A represents an unprecedented assault on the peaceful transfer of power from one president to the next if striking at the core of our constitutional republic is not an impeachable offense. Then what is impeachment for no choice just moments before you and i connected. The new york times reported that senate majority leader mitch. Mcconnell is actually pleased with the impending impeachment. do you think with mcconnell. 's implicit blessing. There's actually a chance that the senate might remove president trump from office so there are three outcomes spouse majority is required for impeachment a senate super majority is required for conviction and then once impeach convicted a senate majority is required for disqualification so the ultimate goal is not simply removed donald trump from office but to disqualify him from ever pursuing federal office again because he has shown himself to be a lethal threat to the republic is clear and present danger to the constitutional republic and what about aside from president. Trump are their members of congress. Either with you in the house or in the senate who you think crossed the line in what took place last week. There were several enablers of donald trump in the united states congress and elsewhere who spent months inflaming the disaffected supporters of donald trump. One example is congressman. Mel brooks went to the march and instigated an armed angry mob to vote. Take names and kick ass. He should be held out. We as elected officials have to be mindful of the words believes. What does it mean to be held accountable in this instance though. What does that look like expulsion at the conduct of for me. The attempt to overturn the results of an election the attempt to instigate a violent mob to take over the us capitol if that is not grounds for expulsion. That i honestly don't know what it's these members of congress and donald trump inspired a violent mob that led to the murder of police office was bludgeoned to death by a fire. Extinguisher are their image. Is of a rioter in the senate chamber wearing tactical gear with plastic handcuffs. As though he were planning to take hostages right. I'm convinced that there were rioters. Who were intent on apprehending and assassinating members of congress. The majority leader the speaker and even the vice president is a video of rieter screaming. The vice president should be hanged a news and a gala were erected outside the capitol and the president was tweeting out against his own vice-president in real time while the capitol was under siege was pouring more gasoline on the fire above violence. He put not only congress at rescue. Put the life of his own vice president. Aris one of your fellow freshman members Also said something to the effect of when speaking to people who are concerned about the outcome of the election He said it's okay to threaten them a little right. It's okay to to threaten members of congress a little. This was madison cawthorn from north carolina in addition to representative brooks. Are there other people who you think you know. Their actions kind of rise to a certain level needs to be a conference investigation to determine which members of congress had a role in inciting insurrection. Against the us congress which is disqualifying which should disqualify you from holding office and it's worth pointing out that. There was a deep strain not only racism antisemitism among the elements of the violent bomb. If i recall correctly one or several of the writers had a shirt that read kim auschwitz. You had confederate flags who had symbols of racism and antisemitism white supremacy for aiding the violent mob. That attempted to take over the capital. It should be cause for concern and you know trumpism is going to have more staying power than trump. I worry that violent white nationalism. Violent antisemitism and racism is going to be a fact of life that will continue to haunt us. Now i think of politics as an alternative to violence. Politics is about the resolution of conflict by means other than violence and if there is a set of the population that loses confidence in politics that sees it as illegitimate and trump has convinced them. That it's illegitimate then. That segment is going to resort to violence. The d. legitimation politics is an open invitation to violence. And i think the jewish community in particular has the most state because history has taught us that paranoid. Conspiratorial politics is often a breeding ground fantasy sentences. I know if we have the most at stake or among the most at stake but certainly everything that we saw last week out of that riot was vile but certainly the racism. The anti semitism really terrible to our listeners. Who don't yet follow. Ajc dot global on instagram. I would encourage you to check out the instagram slider that our team put together detailing some of the anti semitism that the congressman talks

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