Jan 4, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Progressives plot 11th-hour Trump impeachment over Georgia call

President Trump heading to campaign in Georgia for the two U.S. Senate runoffs. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

President Trump may have little more than two weeks left in office, but House Democrats are talking about impeaching him — again.

Why it matters: The party is split over how to respond to his phone call asking the Georgia secretary of state to change his state’s vote totals. Progressives including Ilhan Omar are talking another impeachment, while others such as Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) favor a lesser move like censure. The ticking clock factors into both approaches.

Driving the news: Omar (D-Minn.) said Monday night she wants to impeach the president because he and his allies have become “more emboldened” by not being held accountable.

  • “The Constitution does not make exceptions for the amount of time the president has left in office, or the popular support they have,” Omar wrote in a statement. “And we cannot either.”
  • Fellow progressive Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) told reporters today: “If it was up to me, there would be articles on the floor quite quickly.”

Johnson plans on Tuesday to introduce a resolution censuring the president, saying the call is “a violation of state and federal law.” 

  • Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) told Axios it was “borderline criminal,” but there’s not enough time for an impeachment hearing. “We’re not happy, but we’ll leave it to other officials,” he said.
  • Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) said “any other president” would be impeached but, “we’ve got the virus and public health to take care of.”

The bottom line: Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.), head of the House Democratic Caucus, said: “We’re not looking backward; we’re looking forward.”

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