Apr 22, 2019

House Democratic leaders caution against immediate impeachment hearings

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, (D-Calif.) Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

House Democratic leaders tamped down calls to kick-start impeachment proceedings against President Trump following the release of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report last week, telling rank-and-file lawmakers in a call Monday evening they have no plans to immediately pursue impeachment, 3 officials on the call told the Washington Post.

"We can investigate Trump without drafting articles. We aren't going to go faster, we are going to go as fast as the facts take us."
— Speaker Nancy Pelosi

The big picture: Several House Democratic chairmen said on the Sunday morning cable news shows that while impeachment is still on the table, they plan on first gathering all the facts — including by bringing Attorney General Bill Barr and special counsel Mueller before Congress. Earlier on Monday, Pelosi said in a letter to Democrats that there are other ways to hold the president accountable for his "highly unethical and unscrupulous behavior" besides initiating impeachment proceedings.

Last week, House Financial Services Chairwoman Maxine Waters warned that "Congress’ failure to impeach is complacency in the face of the erosion of our democracy and constitutional norms."

  • But during Monday's call, she did not advocate for immediate impeachment, per the Post, which noted Waters "made a point of clarifying that she is not pressuring lawmakers to join her effort."
  • Other committees leaders reportedly said they will continue their string of investigations into the president and his inner circle.

Meanwhile, some House Democrats, — including Rep. Val Demings (D-Fla.) — pushed back against the leadership stance on impeachment, sources told Politico.

  • "We are struggling to justify why we aren’t beginning impeachment proceedings. As a 27-year law enforcement officer, and while I understand we need to see the full report and all supporting documents, I believe we have enough evidence now."

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 6,804,044 — Total deaths: 362,678 — Total recoveries — 2,788,806Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3 p.m. ET: 1,909,077 — Total deaths: 109,497 — Total recoveries: 491,706 — Total tested: 19,231,444Map.
  3. Public health: Some people are drinking and inhaling cleaning products in attempt to fight coronavirus, CDC says Fauci: "Very concerned" about spread of virus amid George Floyd protests — Cities offer free testing for protesters.
  4. Tech: The pandemic is accelerating next-generation disease diagnostics — Robotics looks to copy software-as-a-service model as use of robots accelerates.
  5. Business: Sports, film production in California to resume June 12 after 3-month hiatus.
  6. Education: Students and teachers flunked remote learning.

In photos: George Floyd's North Carolina memorial service

The remains of George Floyd are brought into Cape Fear Conference B Church. Photo: Ed Clemente/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Hundreds gathered in Raeford, North Carolina to honor George Floyd, whose death in Minneapolis nearly two weeks ago has sparked nationwide protests against police brutality.

The state of play: This is the second memorial for Floyd. A number of his family members remain in Raeford, including his sister. He was born in Fayetteville, North Carolina, The News and Observer reports.

George Floyd updates

A protester holds a placard reading "Covid kills People, Racism kills Communities" as they attend a demonstration in Manchester, northern England, on June 6, to show solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement in the wake of the killing of George Floyd. Photo: Paul Ellis/Contributor.

Thousands are gathering for a day of protests in Washington, D.C., almost two weeks after George Floyd's killing. Protesters in Australia and Europe staged anti-racism demonstrations on Saturday as well.

What's happening: A memorial service for Floyd is taking place in Raeford, North Carolina — near where he was born. Gov. Roy Cooper ordered all flags to fly at half-staff to honor Floyd until sunset. Thousands of demonstrators have gathered in Philadelphia and Chicago.