Speed Reads

time to speak up

GOP's Kinzinger tells 'silent' colleagues 'the time for hiding is over' in fight against Trump

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), who has become one of former President Donald Trump's fiercest critics within the Republican Party, released a video statement on Saturday directed at his GOP colleagues in Congress who he said lack "courage to speak out" against Trump "while privately hoping for change."

The impetus for Kinzinger's message was the decision by his friend Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R-Ohio) — who along with Kinzinger was one of 10 House Republicans to vote to impeach Trump after the Jan. 6 riot — to not run for re-election next year amid a challenge from the party's pro-Trump faction. 

The looming end of Gonzalez's tenure in the lower chamber does indicate Trump is "winning" the intra-GOP battle, Kinziger admitted. But he said that's only because other lawmakers have remained silent during the tumult. "The future of the party and politics of this country doesn't rest on the 10 of us," Kinzinger said, referring to the impeachment supporters. 

"The time for hiding is over, the stakes are too high," Kinziger warned, adding that anyone who believes Trump truly is the party's leader must "own his comments" or "denounce them," while anyone who doesn't think Trump should helm the GOP "must publicly say that."