Today six Democrats in the House of Representatives introduced five new articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump. According to the Hill, Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN), a sponsor of the resolution said, “Given the magnitude of the constitutional crisis, there’s no reason for delay.”
The five articles of impeachment presented today express these charges, as reported in the Hill:
- That President Trump committed obstruction of justice in the firing of former FBI Director James Comey, who, up until his firing, had been leading the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 Presidential election and potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia to accomplish that end
- That President Trump violated the foreign emoluments clause, which prohibits elected officials from receiving gifts from foreign governments without Congressional approval
- That President Trump also violated the domestic emoluments clause, which prohibits the President from profiting from his office
- That President Trump undermined the country’s courts in ways that undermine democracy and
- That President Trump also undermined the country’s press in ways that undermine democracy.
The other five sponsors of today’s impeachment resolution are Democratic Reps. Luis Gutiérrez (IL), Al Green (TX), Marcia Fudge (OH), John Yarmuth (KY), and Adriano Espaillat (NY). Representative Green introduced his own articles of impeachment against President Trump last month, and at that time vowed to bring the articles of impeachment up for a vote before the end of this year. Representative Brad Sherman (D-CA) has also introduced separate articles of impeachment for President Trump based on Trump’s firing of FBI Director Comey.
The Republican National Committee (RNC) was quick to criticize today’s impeachment resolution. According the Hill, RNC spokesperson Michael Ahrens said, “House Democrats lack a positive message and are completely unwilling to work across the aisle, so instead they’ve decided to support a baseless radical effort that the vast majority of Americans disagree with.”
Democrats themselves appear to be somewhat divided as to whether now is the right time to bring forward articles of impeachment and as to whether doing so might be a political liability. House minority leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has been vocal in currently opposing impeachment, saying the efforts are premature, while the investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller, into possible collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign in manipulating the 2016 Presidential election, is still in progress.
According to the Hill, resolution co-sponsor Steve Cohen acknowledged that some Democrats simply “want Trump to hang himself, and think that we don’t need to help him. But I think there are a great number of Democrats who think there have been impeachable offenses. I think the majority of Democrats think that.” Cohen also indicated that he is not yet asking for a vote on the articles of impeachment, but instead would like there to be hearings about them before the Judiciary Committee. Given the Republican majority, Cohen’s request is likely to fall on deaf ears, but Cohen said, “It’s important that we not let the failure of the Republicans stop us from doing what is right.”