The Case for an Impeachment Inquiry
What does it mean to launch an impeachment inquiry? We break down this important political process, how we got here, and why an impeachment inquiry is needed now.
“This president is obstructing justice, and he’s engaged in a cover-up, and that could be an impeachable offense.” – Speaker Nancy Pelosi
Donald Trump has breached the limits of his executive power, blatantly disregarding democratic norms to cover up his criminal activity and putting our country into a full-blown constitutional crisis.
After nearly two years of investigating, Mueller concluded that Trump welcomed an attack on our democracy from a hostile foreign nation. Trump’s campaign attempted numerous times to coordinate with Russia to win the election, including sharing campaign polling and more than 140 contacts with Russian nationals, Wikileaks, and their intermediaries.
Then Trump repeatedly broke the law in his attempts to obstruct justice and conceal his campaign’s Kremlin ties. Mueller found over 10 episodes of criminal obstruction, including witness tampering, dangling pardons to discourage cooperation with prosecutors, and ordering the White House counsel to fire the special counsel — and then later to lie about that order.
Mueller made it clear in his report: He did not exonerate Trump and left the decision of how to hold him accountable in Congress’s hands. But when Congress tried to investigate Mueller’s evidence further, Trump dodged lawfully-issued subpoenas, intimidated witnesses, and thwarted congressional oversight — and encouraged current and former members of his administration to do the same.
Trump and his allies went to great lengths to bury the crimes that Mueller’s report exposed. The White House didn’t want the American people to know the true extent of this administration’s corruption.
Trump’s crimes are numerous and his attacks on our democracy are staggering. But our nation has a system of checks and balances precisely for moments like this. Mueller knew that, which was why he left the decision in the hands of Congress. Now it’s time for them to hold Trump accountable.
It’s time for Congress to launch an impeachment inquiry.
How did we get here?
While Trump claims the Mueller report “completely exonerated” him, he’s spent months panicking and hiding the truth from the American people.
The Mueller report showed that Trump and his team expected to benefit from and was receptive to Russia’s attack on our democracy, uncovering over 140 contacts with Russian nationals and Wikileaks. Mueller also detailed at least 10 episodes of obstruction of justice by Trump, including witness tampering, dangling pardons to discourage cooperation with federal investigators, and ordering the White House counsel to fire the Special Counsel and then lie about that order.
After reviewing the evidence in Mueller’s report, more than 900 former federal prosecutors determined that Trump would have been charged with criminal obstruction of justice if it were not for a Department of Justice policy protecting a sitting president from indictment.
In other words, if any other American had obstructed justice as blatantly as Trump, they’d be heading to prison.
Trump broke the law, and his administration continues to break the law in their attempts to bury the truth and obstruct legitimate investigations.
We demanded Watergate-style hearings to lay out Mueller’s findings in front of the American people, but Trump and his administration have blocked those hearings at every turn.
The time has come to hold Trump accountable for his corruption — and the best way to do that is to launch an impeachment inquiry.
“There is no political inconvenience exception to the United States Constitution. If any other human being in this country had done what’s documented in the Mueller report, they’d be arrested and put in jail. We took an oath not to try and protect Donald Trump, we took an oath to protect and serve the Constitution of the United States of America, and the way we do that is we begin impeachment proceedings now against [Trump].” – Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
How does an impeachment inquiry start and what does it entail?
An impeachment inquiry is now the only viable option to fully expose the extent of Trump and his administration’s corruption and hold him accountable for the numerous crimes that Mueller detailed in his report.
Launching an impeachment inquiry would:
- Lay out the facts of Trump’s criminal wrongdoing in nationally televised hearings for the American people to see.
- Put the House in a stronger legal position to demand evidence and testimony from key witnesses, and make it more likely that courts will require compliance from the White House.
An impeachment inquiry would cut through the noise of “no obstruction, no collusion” and present the evidence of criminal wrongdoing that Trump and his allies attempted to hide from the American people.
Any member of the House of Representatives can introduce a resolution of impeachment or a resolution to begin an impeachment inquiry.
The resolution is typically sent to the House Judiciary Committee. In addition to the Judiciary Committee, the Speaker of the House (in this case, Nancy Pelosi) can influence whether or not to proceed with an impeachment inquiry. A vote by the entire House of Representatives may be needed to trigger an impeachment inquiry.
If an inquiry is launched, the Judiciary Committee handles the investigation to determine if there are sufficient grounds to impeach. Hearings are held, witnesses are called to testify, and subpoenas are issued for documents and evidence.
Why an impeachment inquiry now?
Launching an impeachment inquiry is not about politics or party. It’s about standing up for our Constitution and the rule of law.
An impeachment inquiry doesn’t come without risks — but doing nothing is not an option.
Letting Trump get away with his crimes and his continued obstruction of justice would set an incredibly dangerous precedent for our democracy and for future presidents.
An impeachment inquiry does not guarantee that Congress will hold an impeachment vote or remove Trump from office, but it’s the best way to air all of the evidence for the American people. An impeachment inquiry is the first step. If it begins, this impeachment inquiry may take months, and would likely include court battles over key evidence and testimony, but now is the moment to begin.
Does your representative support an impeachment inquiry?
There are 435 members in the House of Representatives, where an impeachment inquiry would begin. We’re tracking where each rep stands.
What can we do now?
History will judge what we do in this moment. Will we vigorously defend our democracy, our Constitution, and the rule of law? Or will we let the criminal in the White House bully us into silence?
Call your representatives now and demand they launch an impeachment inquiry: