House conservatives’ push to impeach IRS Commissioner John Koskinen looks to be in jeopardy, as a handful of centrist Republicans prepare to join Democrats to oppose the effort.
But with the House Freedom Caucus making a full court press to save the impeachment effort, and moderate Republicans still marshaling support, the outcome is by no means certain heading into Thursday.
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Led by Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Freedom Caucus members are expected to make an impassioned pitch in favor of impeachment at a Thursday morning Republican Conference meeting. In a warning to GOP lawmakers, hard-liners are arguing that a vote to table, or kill, the impeachment resolution would be a vote to protect the IRS — an agency especially despised among Republican voters.
That sort of accusation, that they’re shielding the IRS, makes even those Republicans lukewarm on impeachment bristle. It’s the very reason why many high profile Republicans won’t weigh in on the matter publicly right now. None of the top four Republican leaders in the House have said whether they intend to back impeachment. Neither would Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas), who tap danced around the issue when asked about it Wednesday, saying he was “still considering the matter.”
But even some of the hard-line conservatives backing the effort are doubtful they can get it over the finish line because of a group of centrists banding together to block it.
“I’m sure it will be tabled,” said Rep. Scott Perry (R-Pa.), a Freedom Caucus member, earlier this week. Conservative Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-N.C.) made a similar prediction Tuesday. “We will not have our vote on it. We will not have our chance to discuss it. … The reality is there are too many forces in this town that don’t …