SEABROOK – Several members of Congress that represent Maryland expressed their support of the decision made by House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi to start an impeachment inquiry on Sept. 24 on President Donald Trump following the news that he may have withheld military aid funding for Ukraine to start an investigation against presidential candidate Joe Biden.
Pelosi, who has been vocally against the impeachment process, said in a press conference that Trump’s actions are a “breach of his Constitutional responsibilities.” According to a memo released by the White House, Trump asked Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky for “a favor” to investigate a server connected to former presidential candidate Hilary Clinton and any connection that Biden may have in the removal of a prosecutor investigating his son’s gas company. Following the conversation, the funds designated for Ukraine were finally released.
“This week the president has admitted to asking the president of Ukraine to take actions which would benefit him politically,” Pelosi said. “The actions of the Trump presidency revealed the dishonorable fact of the president’s betrayal of his oath of office, betrayal of our national security and betrayal of the integrity of our elections.”
With Pelosi’s announcement, six investigations that House committees are already proceeding against Trump will have her full support moving forward and once they collect all the evidence, the House will vote on impeaching Trump. Several House committees are investigating the president on multiple topics including enriching himself while in office and his tax returns.
Back in August, U.S. Rep. Anthony Brown (MD-04) voiced his support for an investigation on Trump following House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler said publically that the panel was thinking on proceeding with an impeachment inquiry before Pelosi giving her support.
“Congress and the American people must have a full, unimpeded investigation into the alleged instances of obstruction of justice, public corruption and other abuses of power by President Trump,” Brown said. “I fully support the House Judiciary Committee’s formal inquiry into whether to recommend impeachment of President Trump, and I know they will continue to do the hard work to protect our democracy, constitution and the American people.”
Several Maryland members of the House of Representatives expressed their support for the inquiry. Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-8), who has been vocals about his desires to start the impeachment process to gain access to more evidence for other investigations against Trump, announced his support of Pelosi’s decision.
“The president has betrayed his office, our national security & the rule of law & his Administration is flagrantly violating the federal statute compelling them to turn over the whistleblower’s complaint,” Raskin said. “The lawlessness must end.”
Congressman C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-2) said he supports Pelosi and other democrats because Trump’s actions are a threat to national security by withholding the funding to help an ally in their war against Russia, calling it “reckless and dangerous.”
Rep. John Sarbanes, who joined Pelosi in a press conference for the 200 days the Senate has not presented The For The People Act on the Senate floor on Sept. 27, called the President’s actions “a blatant abuse of power and a clear violation of law.”
To impeach a sitting president, the House of Representatives must have a majority vote supporting the measure before moving to the Senate. Two-thirds of the Senate must vote in favor of impeachment as well.
There is a fear that Republicans would forgo presenting an impeachment to the Senate floor after a majority vote. After Pelosi’s announcement, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ken.) said on Sept. 25 senate rules state he must take up the inquiry if it passes the House. However, in a campaign video released on Oct. 4, McConnell vowed to stop the impeachment inquiry.
U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) said that they are in favor of seeing the process enter the senate chambers.
“President Trump’s actions are a threat to our democracy,” Van Hollen said. “His continued disregard for our Constitution and the democratic norms that guide our nation have caused grave harm to our country, our standing in the world, and to the Office of the Presidency. These issues must be fully investigated to the utmost of our abilities.”
Moments following Pelosi’s announcement, Trump lashed out on Twitter, calling the impeachment process “witch hunt garbage” that is bad for the country.