Adam Kinzinger Says Josh Hawley's Presidential Ambitions 'Will Fail'

Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger has said Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) should "seek redemption" and stop focusing on his desire to be president, which Kinzinger said will not happen.

Kinzinger, who represents Illinois' 16th congressional district, took to Twitter on Wednesday to join in criticism of Hawley's behavior during arguments in former President Donald Trump's second impeachment trial.

Hawley appeared to pay little attention to the trial. He sat in the visitor's gallery with his feet up on the seat in front of him during the House impeachment managers' submissions. The senator appeared to be reading papers from a folder.

"Would be nice if @HawleyMO would actually put his Presidential ambitions (which will fail) aside for a moment to actually be a grown up Senator, come to terms with what he did, and seek redemption," Kinzinger tweeted, sharing a story from The Hill newspaper about Hawley and other senators who seemed to be ignoring the trial.

Kinzinger also added the hashtag "#RestoreOurGOP."

Would be nice if @HawleyMO would actually put his Presidential ambitions (which will fail) aside for a moment to actually be a grown up Senator, come to terms with what he did, and seek redemption. #RestoreOurGOP https://t.co/RH53ZiboYv

— Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) February 10, 2021

Hawley was considered a strong contender for the Republican presidential nomination in the coming years. Trump's defeat in 2020 seemed to increase his chances but his objection to Pennsylvania's Electoral College votes on January 6 and the deadly Capitol riot that tried to prevent certification of President Joe Biden's win the same day damaged Hawley's standing.

The senator defended himself from claims he wasn't paying attention to the trial, saying he sat in the gallery above the Senate floor because it was less "claustrophobic."

"I've got the trial briefs with me and I've also got my notes that I'm taking during the proceedings," Hawley told reporters, explaining the folder of documents.

Kinzinger was one of just 10 House Republicans to vote in favor of impeaching Trump and he's been an outspoken critic of the former president, praising the House impeachment managers.

"The prosecution is compelling," Kinzinger tweeted on Wednesday. "Donald Trump incited and directed the insurrection. He knew what he was doing. I cannot imagine how any Senator could vote against removal."

Former Senator Claire McCaskill, a Democrat whom Hawley defeated in 2018, also criticized him in an MSNBC appearance on Wednesday.

"He's proud to pull himself apart from everyone else and be the only guy. This is all political for him. It's all political theater. That's why he's up there with his feet over the chair," McCaskiil said.

Hawley has voted against confirming seven of Biden's cabinet nominees so far, making him the only senator to oppose every single one. It remains to be seen how he will vote when the Senate decides whether to convict or acquit Trump.

Hawley has been asked for comment on this article.

Illinois Congressman Adam Kinzinger
Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-IL, questions witnesses during a House Committee on Foreign Affairs hearing looking into the firing of State Department Inspector General Steven Linick, on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on September 16, 2020. Kinzinger has dismissed Senator Josh Hawley's presidential ambitions. KEVIN DIETSCH/POOL/AFP/Getty Images