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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) holds a news conference following the 2018 midterm elections at the Capitol Building on November 7, 2018 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

To Hold 'Lawless President' to Account, Nearly 30 Groups Urge Pelosi to Start Trump Impeachment Inquiry Now

"Our families, friends, communities, country, and planet deserve a party that chooses people over politics—and that starts with your willingness to take bold, moral leadership."

Jake Johnson

Warning that President Donald Trump poses a greater threat to vulnerable communities, the rule of law, and the planet with every day he remains in office, more than two dozen progressive groups on Tuesday urged House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to ditch the "political excuses" and immediately begin impeachment proceedings.

"The American people deserve a leader who is willing to bravely use power to rein in the Trump administration and defend our communities."
—Letter

"Voters gave Democrats control of the House of Representatives because they wanted aggressive oversight of the Trump administration," wrote CREDO, Indivisible, and 27 other groups in a letter to Pelosi.

"Yet," the letter states, "your leadership is resulting in dangerous inaction that enables this racist and xenophobic president."

The groups expressed "deep disappointment and concern" about Pelosi's refusal to listen to the public and members of her own leadership team on the necessity of launching impeachment hearings.

Citing ongoing efforts by the White House to block congressional oversight as well as Trump's possible obstruction of justice, the groups wrote that waiting to take decisive action against the president "is a privilege."

"But it is not a privilege available to the families separated by his deportation force or his Muslim ban, the asylum seekers languishing in Mexico, the people threatened by his embrace of white supremacy, the LGBTQ people whose rights he is taking away, the women whose bodies he is trying to control or the communities threatened by his denial of the climate crisis," the letter states.

"The American people deserve a leader who is willing to bravely use power to rein in the Trump administration and defend our communities," the letter continues. "You have stated that we are facing a constitutional crisis. But the remedy for such a constitutional crisis is not traditional congressional oversight—particularly when confronted with a president who has nothing but contempt for such oversight."

The progressive coalition's letter comes less than a week after Mueller delivered public remarks on his findings that many Democratic members of Congress interpreted as a clear "impeachment referral."

But, following Mueller's statement, Pelosi continues to voice opposition to impeachment hearings despite growing calls from Democratic members of Congress and the U.S. public. Instead, Pelosi has vowed to continue investigating the president—an approach progressives decried as "embarrassingly weak" and "out of touch."

Pelosi reiterated her position during a private leadership meeting on Monday, according to CNN.

During her speech before the California Democratic Party Convention Saturday, Pelosi was interrupted by "impeach" chants from her home crowd, yet another indication of growing support for impeachment among the Democratic base.

In their letter on Tuesday, the progressive groups said Pelosi still has "a chance to turn things around" by throwing her support behind impeachment proceedings.

"In the very near future, the Trump era will be one that evokes the question—what did you do?" the groups wrote. "We urge you to use your power to lead and to stop asking us to wait."

Read the full letter:

We write to express deep disappointment and concern over your refusal to use the full scope of your constitutional power to hold Trump accountable. We urge you to reconsider your position on this issue and immediately open an impeachment inquiry.

Voters gave Democrats control of the House of Representatives because they wanted aggressive oversight of the Trump administration. Yet, your leadership is resulting in dangerous inaction that enables this racist and xenophobic president. Our families, friends, communities, country and planet deserve a party that chooses people over politics—and that starts with your willingness to take bold, moral leadership.

As Speaker of the House, you have the power to ensure Congress exercises its constitutional obligation to hold this president accountable, but instead of using your power, you are giving us political excuses for why you shouldn't. Instead of leading, you and your colleagues have asked us to wait—wait for the Mueller report, wait for the unredacted Mueller report, wait for Mueller's testimony about the Mueller report, wait for more investigations, wait for bipartisan consensus,wait for impeachment to poll better, wait for the 2020 election.

With 10 distinct episodes of obstruction of justice already clear from the Mueller report, violations of the emoluments clause happening on an almost daily basis, and Trump's administration now defying subpoenas for both documents and testimony, waiting is a privilege. But it is not a privilege available to the families separated by his deportation force or his Muslim ban, the asylum seekers languishing in Mexico, the people threatened by his embrace of white supremacy, the LGBTQ people whose rights he is taking away, the women whose bodies he is trying to control or the communities threatened by his denial of the climate crisis.

The American people deserve a leader who is willing to bravely use power to rein in the Trump administration and defend our communities. You have stated that we are facing a constitutional crisis. But the remedy for such a constitutional crisis is not traditional congressional oversight—particularly when confronted with a president who has nothing but contempt for such oversight and obstinately refuses to comply with legitimate congressional demands and requests. The framers placed the impeachment power in the Constitution precisely for the purpose of confronting a lawless president like Donald Trump.

There's still a chance to turn things around. You are a powerful leader who has stood up for women's rights, cleared a path for other women to get to Congress, and brought us the ACA. Your strong leadership can help move the public narrative, not only on impeachment, but on the dangers Trump's presidency poses for all Americans. Your leadership can position the House of Representatives as the body that exposes the corruption and moral abhorrence of the Trump White House, proves that no president is above the law, and persuades most Americans that this president must be removed from office. You can help expose his defenders and enablers, including those in the Senate, as craven partisans willing to destroy our democracy and defend a criminal president in order to protect tax breaks for their billionaire benefactors and stack the federal courts to defend their white, male privilege.

In the very near future, the Trump era will be one that evokes the question—what did you do? We urge you to use your power to lead and to stop asking us to wait.

Sincerely,

CREDO
Free Speech for People
Movimiento Cosecha
Alameda4Impeachment
By the People
Citizens Impeachment Coalition
Climate Hawks Vote
Courage Campaign
Demand Progress
Democracy for America
Democrats.com
Free Speech for People
Indivisible
IndivisibleSF
Just Foreign Policy
Justice Democrats
Mainers for Accountable Leadership
March for Truth
Million Hoodies Movement for Justice
MPower
Need To Impeach
Other98
RAICES
Revolving Door Project
Roots Action
Social Security Works
#VOTEPROCHOICE
Women's March
Working Families Party


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