Republican Sen. Josh Hawley’s conduct during Trump’s second impeachment trial has sparked outrage online after a photo was shared on social media showing him kicking back with his feet up and ignoring the proceedings — even though he’s a juror on the case.
Reporters covering the trial spotted the senator sitting in the gallery of the Senate chamber instead of on the floor.
NBC News’ Garrett Haake tweeted that he saw the Missouri senator “sitting up in the gallery with his feet up on the seat in front of him, reviewing paperwork, throughout the trial.”
“Not once has he paid attention to the impeachment trial,” reporter Hugo Lowell noted.
CNN congressional correspondent Manu Raju spoke to Hawley, who had this to say about his choice to sit upstairs: “I can basically see the back of their heads. But I sort of picked a spot where I can look right down on them, I can see the TV, and it’s interesting.”
Speaking to Fox News, Hawley added that he thought his gallery seat was “a better viewpoint because I can look right at the impeachment managers and see them in the face. When I’m sitting in the chamber, I kind of look at the back of their head.”
Hawley later told NBC News congressional reporter Julie Tsirkin that he chose the seat because he doesn’t like his assigned seat in the chamber.
He explained, “I feel I had a little bit better view. Where I sit over in [the] Senate chamber is kind of in the corner. … I can also space out a little bit more and it’s just not quite as crowded.”
Josh Hawley is sitting in the gallery, not on the floor, "continuing to read papers in unmarked manila folders. They resembled the folders he had at his desk on Tuesday, but of course his being up in the gallery meant reporters in the gallery couldn’t see" in them — @kasie
— Mike Memoli (@mikememoli) February 10, 2021
Hawley is a juror in this trial. In any other trial, he'd be kicked off. Why not here?
— Victoria Brownworth (@VABVOX) February 10, 2021
Republican Sen. Josh Hawley — who objected to Biden’s win and encouraged the Capitol attack — is currently sat with his feet up in the Senate gallery. Not once has he paid attention to the impeachment trial.
— Hugo Lowell (@hugolowell) February 10, 2021
Breaking via MSNBC: Republican Josh Hawley is ignoring the trial reading stuff that has nothing to do with the impeachment… even sitting with his legs up on the seat in front of him.
If this gets you kicked out of Biology class, why doesn't it get him kicked out of the Senate?
— Chip Franklin InsideTheBeltway.com (@chipfranklin) February 10, 2021
Hawley says he’s watching from the gallery because there’s more room and he has a better vantage point
— Igor Bobic (@igorbobic) February 10, 2021