House Speaker Nancy Pelosi beat back calls from her Democratic peers to pursue impeachment of President Donald Trump, saying Monday there are better ways to address Trump’s behavior during investigations into alleged collusion with Russia.
Pelosi described Trump’s behavior, according to special counsel Robert Mueller’s April 18 report, as “highly unethical and unscrupulous behavior,” but cautioned Democrats against impeachment efforts.
“We can investigate Trump without drafting [impeachment] articles,” Pelosi said on a Monday call with House Democrats, Politico reported. “We aren’t going to go faster, we are going to go as fast as the facts take us,” she added.
“It is also important to know that the facts regarding holding the President accountable can be gained outside of impeachment hearings,” Pelosi wrote in a letter to House Democrats, according to Politico.
Pelosi’s remarks come amid marked division among Democrats about whether to push for Trump’s impeachment. Democratic Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren has been a vocal advocate of impeachment, and other Democrats have agreed.
“We are struggling to justify why we aren’t beginning impeachment proceedings … and while I understand we need to see the full report and all supporting documents, I believe we have enough evidence now,” Democratic Florida Rep. Val Demings said Monday, according to Politico. “Mueller didn’t do us any favors,” Demings also said, adding that Mueller “left us bread crumbs to follow,” Politico reported.
“It’s time for Congress to take a stand. … Impeach Donald Trump,” Democratic Texas Rep. Al Green also tweeted Monday.
Other Democrats, including several presidential candidates, aren’t sold on impeachment.
“It is appalling some of the things that were going on,” Klobuchar said at Monday night’s CNN town hall, dodging a definitive answer about whether she supports impeachment. “We need to have hearings in both the House and the Senate … The impeachment proceedings are up to the House,” Klobuchar added.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) April 22, 2019
Bernie also said at his Monday town hall that Congress shouldn’t focus all of its energy on impeachment efforts in lieu of addressing more important issues like a minimum living wage, climate change and healthcare reform.
Other Democrats, including House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, have pushed back on impeachment proceedings. “Based on what we have seen to date, going forward on impeachment is not worthwhile at this point,” Hoyer said April 18 after the report dropped.
Trump strongly pushed back against possible impeachment proceedings in a Monday tweet calling Democrats the real criminals.
Only high crimes and misdemeanors can lead to impeachment. There were no crimes by me (No Collusion, No Obstruction), so you can’t impeach. It was the Democrats that committed the crimes, not your Republican President! Tables are finally turning on the Witch Hunt!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 22, 2019
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