Today, Senator Brian Schatz issued a statement calling upon Congress to begin the process of impeaching President Donald Trump. The statement in its entirety is as follows:
“The president is breaking statutory and constitutional law every day, and he is abusing his inherent power as president with regularity, enthusiasm, and most troublingly, impunity. He and his legal team argue that a sitting president’s authorities are so vast that they literally transcend the law. They argue that the Congress has a remedy for this criminality and defiance – the impeachment process. If that is their view, so be it. On behalf of the people who elected us, we must formalize and accelerate the impeachment process so that Congress, by exercising its responsibility under Article 1 of the Constitution, can provide some measure of accountability.
“This isn’t just essential for now, but so that no future president of either party believes that it is possible, practicable, or wise to defy the law, Congress’ constitutional role, and the American people.”
The statement comes in light of last month’s whistleblower complaint that alleges Trump of pressuring Ukraine’s president to investigate democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. On Monday, Trump admitted that he did, in fact, discuss Biden with the Ukrainian president, but insisted there was nothing inappropriate about the discussion.
Michael Atkinson, the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community who was appointed by President Trump, labeled the whistleblower complaint as “urgent” and “credible,” but Joseph Maguire, the acting Director of National Intelligence has refused to turn over the information.
A number of democrats and republicans in congress have criticized the decision to withhold the specifics of the whistleblower complaint. Schatz’ call for impeachment joins a growing list of house democrats who have called for impeachment processes to begin.