Rep. Max Rose (D-NY) said Friday that President Donald Trump should “prove” his innocence regarding the impeachment charges Democrats have levied against him.
Rose — a freshman Democrat that represents Staten Island and parts of Brooklyn, New York — said Friday that President Trump is the sole person to blame after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) started an impeachment inquiry into him.
During his travels throughout Staten Island on the campaign trail, Rose has brushed off his support for impeachment, suggesting that he did not want to back impeachment of Trump. Rose pinned the blame on President Trump, claiming that he forced Democrats’ hand on impeachment.
The Staten Island Democrat suggested that President Trump has to “prove” his innocence, rather than have Democrats prove that he committed an impeachable offense during his call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
“I do not want to be here. This is the last thing I want to be doing,” Rose said. “But no one is to blame but the president. The president says he is innocent, so all we are saying is ‘prove it.’ But that is not what they are doing. They are not cooperating, and we need to get to the bottom of it.”
Democrat Rose also blamed Republicans for going “deaf, mute, and blind whenever allegations against the president are brought up.”
Rose’s comment mirrors those of Democrats during the Senate confirmation of then-Supreme Court Justice nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh. In September 2018, Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) refused to say whether Kavanaugh was presumed innocent. Hirono instead said that his accuser needed “to be believed.”
Rose’s rhetoric on impeachment has appeared to have shifted dramatically. Last month, the New York Democrat wrote an op-ed in which he urged Democrats to focus on their agenda.
“We are in danger of losing the trust of the American people if we choose partisan warfare over improving the lives of hardworking families,” he claimed.
Rose’s message mirrors other vulnerable 2020 Democrat representatives such as Rep. Susan Wild (D-PA). Wild said last week that moderate Democrats need to ensure that impeachment does not “overshadow” their legislative agenda.
Rose also slammed former Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, and his position on a Ukrainian oil company, Burisma.
“It was the wrong decision for Hunter Biden to be on that board. In no way, shape, or form should someone’s public service benefit their family,”
However, he quickly pivoted toward attacking President Trump’s family.
But if we are going to question Hunter Biden, we should also question Donald Trump Jr. and the way his companies have benefited, and not just Donald Trump Jr., but the other guy — the one who is even less impressive. What’s his name again? Eric! That’s right, Eric.
New York Republicans have moved to highlight Rose’s shifting positions on impeachment.
Jessica Proud, a top New York GOP operative who worked for Rose’s opponent in 2018, said, “Staten Island is Trump country.”
“They are very resistant to the notion of leftist elitists in Washington who are perpetually offended by everything. They view this as just an attempt to get Trump out, and I don’t see how it is going to serve Rose,” she said.
“It cuts right to the heart of the brand he is trying to create for himself, that is going to go to Washington and not join the partisan fray. It puts him squarely in the Democratic camp,” Proud added.