House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that Congress is launching an impeachment inquiry of President Trump after his communication with the Ukrainian president, saying he violated the Constitution.
After months of resistance, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced in a September 24 news conference that Congress would officially be launching an inquiry into potentially impeaching President Donald Trump. The inquiry comes amid a revelation that Trump attempted to pressure a foreign leader (Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky) by promising aid in exchange for investigating a potential 2020 political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, as well as his son, Hunter Biden. Trump has denied using foreign aid as leverage. He did confirm that he withheld military aid to Ukraine recently, although, “there was no quid pro quo,” he told reporters at the United Nations, just hours before Pelosi’s announcement.
Pelosi stated in a brief press conference that the House of Representatives has determined that Trump’s intent to investigate the Biden family with the aid of a foreign power “undermines our national security and intelligence committees.” She went on to say that, “the actions of our president have seriously undermined the Constitution, especially when the president says that he can’t be held accountable under Article 2. The president must be held accountable. No one is above the law.” She concluded by saying that a special committee will be formed to investigate impeachment proceedings. Trump had a meltdown on Twitter immediately following the announcement.
“Such an important day at the United Nations, so much work and so much success, and the Democrats purposely had to ruin and demean it with more breaking news Witch Hunt garbage,” the president tweeted. “So bad for our Country! Pelosi, [Jerry] Nadler, [Adam] Schiff and, of course, Maxine Waters! Can you believe this? They never even saw the transcript of the call. A total Witch Hunt! PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT!”
A whistleblower, who said they are willing to testify before Congress, revealed that on the call with Zelensky, Trump raised the possibility of investigating Biden’s dealings in Ukraine while he was still vice president. More shocking revelations surfaced on September 23, including that Trump allegedly ordered acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney to withhold $400 million in military aid to Ukraine the week before the presidents’ call. Trump has offered to release the transcript of the call between himself and Zelensky, but the whistleblower suggests that the transcript doesn’t exist. Democrats have been divided on the issue of impeachment, but multiple representatives have come forward in the past few days to publicly voice their support to begin the inquiry.
Seven freshman Democrats — Gil Cisneros (CA), Jason Crow (CO), Chrissy Houlahan (PA), Elaine Luria (VA), Mikie Sherrill (NJ), Elissa Slotkin (MI), and Abigail Spanberger (VA) — penned an oped for The Washington Post calling for the inquiry. “This flagrant disregard for the law cannot stand,” they wrote. “To uphold and defend our Constitution, Congress must determine whether the president was indeed willing to use his power and withhold security assistance funds to persuade a foreign country to assist him in an upcoming election.”