Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) is breaking ranks with House leadership by announcing her plans to file a resolution to impeach President Trump. On Wednesday, Tlaib, a freshman progressive, made the "emergency" announcement surrounded by a group of supporters. They wore shirts and held signs with statements such as "He's a Racist" and "#TimeTo Impeach".
"We want to be able to work on these economic justice issues, racial justice issues and everything. But guess what? There is a wall there, and a constitutional crisis that is not going to be able to have us be able to do our jobs as American Congress members to push a lot of these agendas forward," Rep. Tlaib stated. "This last election was a calling, I mean we saw record turnout in an election year where people wanted to elect the jury that would begin the impeachment proceedings to Donald Trump."
In an attempt to maintain party unity, Rep. Tlaib argued her party agrees the president needs to be impeached.
"This is not to say that we disagree. I think that every single colleague of mine agrees there are impeachable offenses. That's one thing we all agree on," Rep. Tlaib continued. "We may disagree on the pace. We may disagree that we have to wait on certain hearings, but at the same time, I think they all know the dangers of allowing President Trump to continue to violate our United States Constitution."
Demonstrators went to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office to push for her support. Rep. Tlaib's decision to file the motion is contrary to the desire of Pelosi and other senior Democrat leaders. The Washington Examiner reports Democrat Caucus Chair, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), called the announcement "premature".
Speaker Pelosi has continually pushed back on the notion the Democrats' priority is impeachment. Party leaders maintain they're waiting to hear from Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election before making their final decision.
"When the facts are known, then we can make a judgment," Pelosi said last week according to Fox News.
In a February interview with Rolling Stone Magazine, Pelosi shared her concerns about impeachment. She finds the process to be "disruptive" to the nation.
"You want to remember that President Nixon was not impeached. The Republicans went to him when they saw the evidence. The House proceeded with the hearings, but they never impeached because of information that came out that made it clear that they shouldn't put the country through this process," stated Pelosi. "It's a very disruptive process to put the country through, and it's an opportunity cost in terms of time and resources. You don't want to go down that path unless it is unavoidable."
"We have no idea — nor should we — what Mueller may have, if it involves the president or his campaign," she continued. "I don't know how bad it would have to be for them to do something, but the Republicans in Congress have ignored a great deal. You have a Cabinet that is a partially 'acting Cabinet' because people have left in disgrace or dismay. You have a White House which is a fact-free zone. They have no interest in evidence, data, science or truth when it comes to making decisions."
Tlaib's move comes at a divisive time in the Democrat Party. CBN News has reported this week on the party's internal turmoil as House Democrats attempt to a establish a measure addressing recent anti-Semitic remarks from freshman Democrats Rep. Ilhan Omar and Rep. Tlaib. Senior leaders want to maintain Jewish support; however, the newer House members want the measure to include protections from Islamophobia.
Rep. Tlaib faces her own turmoil as she stands accused of breaking campaign rules. Fox News reports Tlaib is under questioning for campaign records that reveal she paid herself $17,500 after midterm elections. The FEC rules no one can receive salary payments "beyond the date he or she is no longer a candidate."
After making the public impeachment announcement from Capitol Hill, Rep. Tlaib took to Twitter to announce the resolution would be introduced later this month.
"Today, I announced that later this month, I will be introducing a resolution to have the Judiciary Committee move on investigating grounds for impeachment," Rep. Tlaib wrote. "Our democracy must be protected."
Today, I announced that later this month, I will be introducing a resolution to have the Judiciary Committee move on investigating grounds for impeachment. Our democracy must be protected. @by_the_ppl @CREDOMobile #accountabilityNow pic.twitter.com/qWXfE6zLmp
— Rashida Tlaib (@RashidaTlaib) March 6, 2019