On February 5, 2020, President Donald Trump was acquitted by the Senate of the House’s impeachment charges. However, there was one Republican who voted to convict: Senator Mitt Romney of Utah. Although this is the first time a senator from the president’s own party voted to convict, this is not the first time a member of the President’s own party supported impeachment.
By December 1932, President Herbert Hoover’s political fate had been sealed…he had lost reelection quite badly amidst the greatest economic slump the United States ever faced, winning less than 40% of the vote and a paltry six states. Despite this, one rogue wanted to kick the president while he was down…one from his own party.
President Herbert Hoover…McFadden will get his picture in his own entry.
Rep. Louis T. McFadden (R-Penn.) had not been a terribly controversial figure as far as Washington goes and he even as chair of the House Banking and Currency Committee had drafted a major banking law signed into law by President Coolidge. However, after the stock market crashed in 1929, McFadden began going down the rabbit hole of conspiracy theories (to the point that he will be getting his own post) and became increasingly a thorn in the side of Hoover. This culminated in his introducing an impeachment resolution, and in doing so accused him, among other things, of having “initiated and carried on secret conversations, ignominious to the United States, with German Government officials and international bankers and others, with intent to deceive and to injure the Government and the people of the United States…” (Congressional Record, 1932). McFadden was referring to the moratorium on debt payments Hoover agreed to with the German government in the face of economic catastrophe. This and other rationales were met with absolutely no approval from members of his own party, who shunned him and took away his committee posts. Senator David A. Reed (R-Penn.) stated, “We intend to act to all practical purposes as though McFadden had died” (Beatrice Daily Sun). On January 17, 1933, Congress tabled the second of his two impeachment inquiry efforts by a vote of 343-11…only ten Democrats in the end supported his efforts. McFadden also tried to impeach the Secretary of the Treasury and members of the Federal Reserve and blamed the Federal Reserve for the Great Depression. Ironically, many economists actually have concluded that the Federal Reserve’s actions turned the downturn into a depression, albeit not through some wicked plot as McFadden claimed.
P.S.: I’ll give you one guess which group his conspiracy theories involved!
Beatrice Daily Sun. (1932, May 10), p. 4.
Louis T. McFadden (PA). “Impeachment of Herbert Hoover – President of the United States.” Congressional Record 76 (1932) p. 399.