Fact Check: A Congressman Did NOT 'Just' Introduce A Bill To Remove Pelosi

Fact Check

  • by: Victoria Eavis
Fact Check: A Congressman Did NOT 'Just' Introduce A Bill To Remove Pelosi No Bill

Did a congressman "just" introduce a bill to remove Nancy Pelosi from her seat as speaker of the House of Representatives? No, that's not true: Rep. Ralph Abraham, R-La., introduced what's called a resolution in October 2019. Ever since, the website america.awm.com has been repeatedly reposting an article that misleads readers into thinking that the resolution is far more recent than October 2019. The most recent iteration of the article is dated October 3, 2020, with the headline: "A Congressman Just Introduced A Bill To Remove Nancy Pelosi From The House." Nowhere in the body of the article does the author explicitly clarify that the resolution was introduced a year before that article appeared.

The article appeared in a Facebook post published by the website's Facebook page, "AWM America," on October 5, 2020 (archived here), with following caption:

A Congressman Just Introduced A Bill To Remove Nancy Pelosi From The House. https://buff.ly/34pbcNQ

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:

Facebook screenshot

(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Tue Oct 6 14:01:19 2020 UTC)

The resolution is what's called a "simple resolution," meaning it has no legal bearing, so to refer to it as a "bill" like this article does is inaccurate. This simple resolution, H. Res. 620, is a one-page document titled "In the Matter of Nancy Pelosi." It states:

Resolved, That pursuant to Article I, Section 5, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution, Representative Nancy Pelosi, be, and she hereby is, expelled from the House of Representatives and the Office of the Speaker is declared to be vacant.

The resolution never made it any further than being introduced. To be passed, it would need to obtain a two-thirds vote by the House, which had a Democratic majority at the time of the resolution's introduction. Because it is an internal House matter, it would not be voted on by the Senate or signed by the President.

Simple resolutions can be introduced to solely express the sentiments of one or more House members or the entire House, and may not carry with them the expectation of being voted on or passed. In the case of Abraham's resolution, it was introduced in protest of how Pelosi, the first female speaker of the House, was carrying out the Trump impeachment hearings at the time.

"Nancy Pelosi's vicious crusade against our lawfully-elected President is nothing more than a politically-motivated witch hunt and it must be stopped. She has disgraced the people's House and weaponized the Speaker's gavel for her party's political gain," Abraham said in a press release the day the resolution was introduced in 2019. "I have introduced a resolution calling for her to be expelled from the House and for the Speaker's Office to be vacated," the statement continued.

Abraham also tweeted the following:

Though the resolution has never moved past introduction in October 2019, the article about it has garnered a total of 1.1 million interactions on Facebook, according to CrowdTangle. CrowdTangle is a Facebook-owned insights tool that tracks how public content spreads on social media. The following GIF is a recording of the CrowdTangle dashboard displaying the staggering number of times it has been shared since October 2019:

chrome-capture (1) edit.gif

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  Victoria Eavis

Victoria Eavis is a fact checker at Lead Stories. She recently graduated from Duke University with a B.A. in Cultural Anthropology. In her last few months at Duke, she was a reporter for a student news site, The 9th Street Journal, that covers the city of Durham, North Carolina. 

Read more about or contact Victoria Eavis

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