Democrats Still Pushing Impeachment After 'Three Years of Lies'

Democrats Still Pushing Impeachment After 'Three Years of Lies'

The Democratic-led U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee announced on Monday that it will consider steps this week to formalize its investigation to determine whether to impeach President Donald Trump.

Additionally, it would permit evidence to be received in a closed executive session.

While the resolution focuses mostly on the findings in the Mueller report on the Russian Federation investigation, the committee has also expanded its investigation to include a probe into potential violation of the emoluments clauses.

Pelosi and Democrats see the case for impeachment expanding, working to pin constitutional violations on the president, according to a senior Democratic House leadership aide. Former President Richard Nixon resigned in 1974 after the House Judiciary Committee approved articles of impeachment against him, but before the full House voted on the matter.

Nadler said in a statement Monday that Trump went to great lengths to obstruct former special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, which resulted in 37 criminal indictments and seven guilty pleas.

"We urge Chairman Nadler to keep pushing forward, and vote articles of impeachment out of committee by October 1st".

Nadler noted in his statement that Trump stands credibly accused of abusing his power in a number of ways that have nothing to do with the Mueller investigation into the president's 2016 campaign. She, along with other skeptical Democrats, has suggested that it would be better to defeat the president at the ballot box in 2020 than to attempt to remove him from office in a politically charged process.

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A senior staffer with a House Judiciary committee member said Pelosi and Nadler had always been at odds over whether to move forward with the impeachment inquiry and that some within the caucus had grown frustrated with the speaker for not moving more swiftly.

Vice President Mike Pence's recent stay at Trump's Doonbeg resort in Ireland is one example, and House Democrats are already looking into USA military personnel staying at the president's Turnberry property in Scotland - arguing that the president has enriched himself through his official office.

There haven't been any formal votes on launching an inquiry or hearings on articles of impeachment, but many Democrats on the panel insist that the committee's investigations amounted to forward movement on the issue - something many are frustrated hasn't happened sooner.

Pelosi has resisted calls to start an impeachment investigation out of concern that it could backfire politically, given tepid public support and near-solid Republican opposition.

Nadler's committee has managed to secure interviews with some Trump associates, including former White House communications director Hope Hicks and former White House counsel Don McGahn's chief of staff Annie Donaldson. Just under 100 Democrats supported an inquiry before the summer recess began.

A Democratic aide said the new steps follow procedures used in previous impeachments.

The debate about what exactly the committee is doing also highlights the growing divide among House Democrats. "It's your voice and constituency, but give me the leverage I need to make sure that we're ready and it is as strong as it can be", Pelosi said. "Our duty is to uphold the Constitution and we must do all we can to protect our democracy".

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