Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger, one of the most vocal critics of former President Donald Trump, is facing backlash from his own family, as nearly a dozen of his relatives penned a letter, sent to the representative and published by the New York Times, calling him a “disappointment…to God” and a member of the “devil’s army.”
The letter was also sent to prominent Illinois Republicans, and in the two-page document, his family called for him to be removed from office after his votes to impeach Trump and his criticism of the now-former president.
“Oh my, what a disappointment you are to us and to God,” the letter began. “We were once so proud of your accomplishments! Instead, you go against your Christian principals (sic) and join the ‘devil’s army.’ President Trump is not perfect, but neither or you. It is not for us to judge or be judged, but he is a Christian!”
Kinzinger, whom NBC 5 was unable to reach for comment on Tuesday, thanked supporters on social media after the letter was published.
“I’m okay. (I’m) more sad that someone would be willing to choose a man over family,” he said. “And (I’m) sad that it’s happening to so many.”
Kinzinger stepped up his criticisms of Trump after a violent mob stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. Kinzinger voted to impeach the former president, saying that he had incited the violence and that he had done nothing to stop it once it had begun.
In the aftermath of that vote, Kinzinger set up a new political group called “Country First,” aimed at removing “poisonous extremism” from the Republican party.
“This is a home for principled Americans who are tired of the poisonous extremism that has overtaken our beloved nation’s politics,” the website says.
The congressman’s criticisms of Trump have not gone unnoticed by his fellow Republicans. He was censured by the LaSalle County Republican Central Committee over his vote to impeach the former president. Other Republicans have met similar fates for their votes, including Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy and North Carolina Sen. Richard Burr.
Larry Smith, the chairman of the committee, says that other counties in Kinzinger’s district are expected to follow suit in censuring him for his vote.
This news comes amid speculation that Kinzinger’s recent launch into the national political landscape could coincide with a push to run for statewide office, with Sen. Tammy Duckworth and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker, both Democrats, up for re-election to their respective offices in the 2022 election cycle.