Tom Steyer, a billionaire and Democratic activist, is confident that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Representative Jerry Nadler have a plan to began impeachment proceedings against President Trump.
“We do have a plan. I’m not sure exactly when we are going public with it,” Steyer said at his organization’s “Need To Impeach” training and strategy event in Washington on Monday. Steyer, who recently decided not to seek his own presidential bid, plans to spend $40 million in 2019 on the impeachment effort.
Indeed, impeachment has been on Rep. Nadler’s mind as he unintentionally revealed on an Amtrak train to Mollie Hemingway. And in December last year, Nadler appeared on CNN’s State of the Union with Jake Tapper to discuss the president’s former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, and the allegations of campaign finance violations.
TAPPER: If it is proven that the president directed or coordinated with Cohen to commit these [two federal campaign finance] felonies…are those impeachable offenses?
NADLER: Well, they would be impeachable offenses…even though they were committed before the president became president, they were committed in the service of fraudulently obtaining the office. That would be the — that would be an impeachable offense.
However, Speaker Pelosi has been less adamant about pursuing impeachment, calling it a “divisive” option. “I do think that we want to be unified and bring people together. Impeachment is a very divisive approach to take and we shouldn’t take it…without the facts,” she said at an MSNBC Town Hall event.
Pelosi’s comments came the day after newly-elected Democratic Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib was recorded speaking at a party saying she will “go in there and we’re gonna impeach the motherf—-er.”
Tlaib had previously expressed her hope to begin impeachment proceedings against President Trump, albeit more mildly, in her hometown newspaper the Detroit Free Press.
“Those who say we must wait for Special Counsel Mueller to complete his criminal investigation before Congress can start any impeachment proceedings ignore this crucial distinction. There is no requirement whatsoever that a president be charged with or be convicted of a crime before Congress can impeach him,” she wrote in a co-authored editorial.
Pelosi has said that while the desire to impeach Trump is “legitimate,” she thinks the better approach is see what the Congressional committees’ conduct investigations find, and to let voters in 2020 decide. Polling suggests Pelosi is not alone in having other priorities over impeachment.
In a Morning Consult poll conducted in January 2019, just 23 percent of voters said beginning impeachment proceedings to remove Trump from office should be a top priority, the lowest on the list of the given options. Thirty-nine percent of Democrats said impeachment should be a top priority, compared to 43 percent who listed other issues like health care or gun control.
Seeing as how the Democratic party is divided on pursuing President Trump’s impeachment, it should be exciting to hear Tom Steyer’s “plan” when it is fully unveiled.