Bye. House appoints Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner by 107-85 majority: Here’s how everyone voted

The House voted to remove Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner on Wednesday by a vote of 107 to 85, largely along party lines.

Three Democrats from Philadelphia – Reps. Ed Neilson, Kevin Boyle and Amen Brown – were on vacation during the vote so were unable to speak. Below is a list showing exactly who voted for and against impeachment.

The Pennsylvania Senate now has the opportunity to hold a Krasner impeachment trial, although it would have to extend the session. The last scheduled working day of the chamber was Tuesday, November 15.

Removing the district attorney from office would require a two-thirds majority vote, which could occur if five Democrats voted for a unified bloc of Republicans.

If the Senate holds off, the articles of impeachment would have to be passed again by the House, a prospect that is less certain if the chamber falls to Democratic control – which House Democrats say is likely.

No Democrat crossed the aisle to support the largely Republican-led measure, and Republican Mike Puskaric of Allegheny County was the only GOP member to vote against the measure.

The resolution adopted was changed to add five recent articles of impeachment except for the first two articles introduced by Philadelphia Rep. Martina White.

Including the additions, the articles of impeachment approved were as follows:

Article 1 (original)

Claiming that Krasner’s prior firing of more than 30 assistant district attorneys, his hiring of younger, less experienced attorneys, and his criminal justice reform agenda constitute “misconduct in office” because they have “significantly contributed to the rise in crime in the city Philadelphia … and betrayed the trust of the citizens of Philadelphia and the Commonwealth.”

Article 2 (original)

Pointing to Krasner’s refusal to respond to the special committee’s subpoena, which – Krasner’s lawyers say resulted from the illegality of the request.

Article 3 (recent)

Drawing attention to Krasner’s untruthfulness in attempting to overturn the death sentence imposed on the defendant in the 1984 case of Robert Wharton v. Donald T. Vaughn, where his office said contacted the victim, but apparently this did not happen.

Article 4 (recent)

Krasner’s allegation of misconduct in the 2017 case Commonwealth v. Pownall – a former PPD officer who shot and killed civilian David Jones while on duty. All charges against Pownall they were released in October after the judge criticized Krasner’s handling of the grand jury’s pretrial hearing.

Article 5 (recent)

Implying Krasner’s testimony before the Pa. Supreme Court was incorrect. during a hearing on whether it was appropriate for him to represent the prosecution in the ongoing Mumia Abu-Jamal case. Maureen Faulkner, widow of deceased PPD officer Daniel Faulkner, was intended to distract Krasner from the case due to a “conflict of interest”.

Krasner testified that he never represented the “organization” that participated in Abu-Jamal’s decades-long defense campaign. The article said he neglected to mention he represented “at least one pro-Mum activist” and called it a “partial and misleading disclosure” that violated state law. Krasner was never censured for this testimony or by the Supreme Court consented to his involvement in this case. This is the first such accusation a few minutes before the vote in the House.

Article 6 (recent)

Claim that Krasner “repeatedly infringed” Crime Victims Act by “failing to contact victims in a timely manner, intentionally misleading victims or disregarding victim input, and treating victims with contempt and lack of respect.”

Article 7 (recent)

I say Krasner charging rules on issues including “prostitution, theft and drug crimes” violates the Legislature’s authority because they are illegal under state law. It alleges that District Attorney Krasner’s “de facto legalization of prostitution has had a devastating impact on women who are victims of sex trafficking and on the communities in which they are victims of sex trafficking.”

Before the vote, Rep. Torren Ecker, a Republican who served on the committee that met to investigate (but never recommend) Krasner’s impeachment, spoke about the importance of “any misconduct in office” being part of state impeachment rules.

Drawing on the precedent set by the impeachment of Supreme Court Justice Pa. Rolf Larsen in 1994, Ecker emphasized that the expression “may encompass both criminal and other conduct.”

Democratic Rep. Joe Hoehnstein argued that the recent articles of impeachment did not represent “improper and corrupt” behavior as outlined in the 1994 case.

Representatives on both sides of the debate heatedly debated impeachment for more than an hour before finally taking a vote.

Here is the final balance:

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