Freshman South Carolina Republican reflects on riot, election certification, impeachment on 'The Story'
Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., described her first 100 hours on Congress as "hell" Monday, telling "The Story" that the deadly Capitol riot, the fight over the Electoral College vote count and the second impeachment of President Trump represented an unbelievable series of events.
I couldn't imagine being in this situation in my lifetime … it was heartbreaking and made me really angry," Mace, who unseated Democrat Joe Cunningham in November, told host Martha MacCallum.
"I have spoken out strongly against the president and my own colleagues … we have a Constitution as our guide. The vote to certify the Electoral College is in our Constitution," she said of the political battle that precipitated the riot. "That was a ceremonial vote to certify all 50 states that were legally certified."
While Mace voted against objections to the election results in Arizona and Pennsylvania, she also voted against impeaching Trump on the single count of "inciting insurrection." She argued that House Democrats had tarnished the tool of impeachment by rushing it to the floor for a vote.
"We bypassed the Judiciary Committee process," she said. "So for anyone, that sets a very scary constitutional precedent. It's not something that should be rushed."
Mace added that there are "constitutional questions about whether or not you can impeach a president, remove him from office when he's already out of office. He's going to be gone."
Mace said Senate leadership is sending "mixed signals" about whether they would break precedent and seek to convict President Trump.
"There's questions [about] whether they're doing is constitutional, even having a trial and impeaching him when he is out of office … It's basically shredding the Constitution," she argued. "We have to be consistent in how we apply the Constitution across the board, and further, it will sow seeds of division. We're already divided as a nation. That will throw gasoline on the fire."
Mace, who invited her children to attend her swearing-in Jan. 3, told MacCallum that she immediately became concerned about the atmosphere ahead of the vote certification.
"Because of the rhetoric I saw from my colleagues, the president, the calls [coming] in our office, I felt like violence was going to be the outcome on the 6th," she said. "I put my kids on the first plane home Monday morning. If they were there, I would have been devastated. It's personal for me."