President Trump commended Democratic Congresswoman and presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard for being one of three Democrats to defy her party on the impeachment vote.
The Washington Examiner reports President Trump took a moment during his speech at the Turning Point USA conference to say he respected the decision.
“I give her respect. She didn’t vote the other day. I give her a lot of respect because she knew it was wrong,” he said before the cheering crowd.
“Did you see the other day? Crooked Hillary came out and said that Jill Stein from the Green Party was a Russian agent,” Trump continued per BizPac Review. “Now, I don’t know Jill Stein. I’m sure she’s a fine woman. But I know she’s not a Russian agent.”
He added: “Then she said Tulsi Gabbard is a weapon of Russia. They lost all credibility because you know that Tulsi Gabbard — I give her respect. She didn’t vote the other day. I give her a lot of respect because she knew [impeachment] was wrong. I know one thing: She is not an agent of Russia.”
Gabbard was one of three Democrats to defy her party in the impeachment vote, taking to Twitter shortly after to defend her decision.
“Throughout my life, whether through serving in the military or in Congress, I’ve always worked to do what is in the best interests of our country,” Gabbard said. “Not what’s best for me politically or what’s best for my political party. I have always put our country first. One may not always agree with my decision, but everyone should know that I will always do what I believe to be right for the country that I love.”
“After doing my due diligence in reviewing the 658-page impeachment report, I came to the conclusion that I could not in good conscience vote either yes or no,” she added. “I am standing in the center and have decided to vote ‘present.'”
A house divided cannot stand. And today we are divided. Fragmentation and polarity are ripping our country apart. Today, I come before you to make a stand for the center, to appeal to all of you to bridge our differences and stand up for the American people. #StandWithTulsi pic.twitter.com/wAvu8PXNoB
— Tulsi Gabbard (@TulsiGabbard) December 19, 2019
The Washington Examiner adds:
Of those who voted to impeach the president, all were Democrats, save for one independent. Two Democrats voted against the two articles of impeachment that allege Trump abused his power and obstructed Congress.
Watch the president’s comments below: