House Democratic leaders are rebuffing the growing push from their liberal members to move toward impeaching President Trump, warning that the nascent effort is premature and might undermine ongoing investigations into Trump’s ties to Russia.
“We have to find out what the facts are,” said Rep. Adam Schiff (Calif.), the senior Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, which is conducting one of the multiple probes into Russia’s election meddling and possible ties to the Trump campaign.
“The hearings this week are going to be very important to understand what role the president played in the effort to derail any part of the Russia investigation, as has been alleged,” he added, referring to a pair of Senate Intelligence Committee hearings happening this week. “But I don’t want to leap to any conclusions about what we’ll ultimately find or what the consequences should be.
“We’re still very early in the investigative process.”
Rep. Linda Sánchez (Calif.), vice chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, said Schiff’s view reflects the “overwhelming sentiment” among the Democrats.
“A majority of the Caucus is of the belief that we ought to allow the investigation to continue to its logical conclusion before making any determination,” she told reporters in the Capitol.
The comments come just hours before Rep. Al Green (D-Texas) is set to announce that he’s drafting articles of impeachment related to Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey.
Comey was leading the administration’s investigation into the Russia affair and had reportedly rebuffed entreaties by the president to drop elements of the probe — a refusal that led to his firing. Comey is scheduled to testify before the Senate Intel Committee on Thursday.
Green contends the Comey firing represents an impeachment-worthy case of obstruction of justice.
“Obstruction of justice by the President is the problem,” he said Tuesday night in a statement. “Impeachment by Congress is the solution.”
It’s unclear if other Democrats will support Green’s effort. Green declined to comment Wednesday morning, and Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), another vocal supporter of working to impeach Trump, also deflected questions.
“I have not even thought about it,” Waters told The Hill.
SOURCE: MIKE LILLIS