‘Damning’ Facts Will Help Sell Impeachment Probe to Divided Voters at Home, Democrats Say

Lucas Jackson/Reuters

Some moderate Democratic lawmakers who a week ago had little interest in talking about an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump say they are now optimistic they can sell it to voters at home during a recess of the U.S. Congress over the next two weeks.

Representative Susan Wild was among a number of Democrats from highly competitive “swing” seats in the House of Representatives who changed her mind to back an impeachment probe against Trump. She expects to hear about it at a town hall meeting next week in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

Wild says her district is about equally divided between Democrats and Republicans, including Trump voters. But she doesn’t appear worried.

“I don’t think I have to convince them. I think the facts will convince them,” Wild told Reuters on Friday. Her office email and phone calls have been running 11-to-one in favor of an impeachment inquiry, a “marked contrast to the kind of communications that we’ve gotten the last few months from our constituents,” she said.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced a formal impeachment inquiry against Trump on Tuesday. She had resisted demands for such a probe for months, but reversed course after reports that Trump pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in a July 25 telephone call to investigate his political rival Joe Biden and his son Hunter, who did work for a Ukraine gas company.

Wild had previously tried to stay quiet about impeachment, even as liberal activists pressured her. Now her doubts have evaporated.

“The initial summary of the phone call was damning,” she said. But a whistleblower complaint about the call released this week was “horrifying” and “put me over the line to say this is not a qualified call for an impeachment inquiry. We’re there.”

Democratic Representative Dean Phillips, who ousted a Republican from a suburban seat in Minnesota last year and announced support for an impeachment probe on Tuesday, also knows he will have to explain his decision to voters in the coming days.

“First I’m going to be listening, and (then) explain the process, and why principles have to take precedence over party or anything else right now,” Phillips told Reuters.

Some vulnerable Democrats from so-called “frontline” congressional districts sought guidance from the party leadership on talking about impeachment back home. A group met Pelosi and other leaders on Thursday evening to talk about the impeachment process, including how to sell it to voters in their districts, a senior Democratic aide said.

Help came in the form of talking points that one prominent Democrat, Representative David Cicilline, was distributing to members leaving for the break on Friday.

Prompts included: “The president has engaged in serious wrongdoing, betrayed his oath of office, and undermined our national security,” and “Trump abused the office of the president by pressuring a foreign government to target a political opponent ….(and) tried to cover it up.”

Trump denies pressuring Ukraine, and many Republicans argue that the known facts don’t rise to the level of impeachable offenses.

Republican Representative Greg Walden said on Wednesday that the phone call to Zelenskiy “wasn’t President Trump’s finest moment” but does not constitute “high crimes and misdemeanors,” the terminology the Constitution uses for impeachable offenses.

(Additional reporting by Richard Cowan; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)

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Joey
Guest
Joey

Why would I vote for a democrat who for the last three years have done everything for illegals and nothing for this countries citizens? Why would I vote for another democrat who is only interested in impeaching a duly elected president? This makes me know I am voting for President Trump in 2020.

Peter Aiello
Member

These efforts at impeaching Trump are boring and difficult to follow.

Richard
Guest
Richard

The only thing I got from reading the phone transcript and the news articles concerning this whole fiasco is Biden improperly and illegally used his position as VP under Obama to withhold assistance from Ukran in an effort to influence a foreign investigation and get the investigator fired. It seems the Democrats are once again making accusations based on what one of their own party is guilty of. Investigate Biden! Vote Republican to clear the swamp.

General Confusion
Member

“Voters should read the Constitution where they will learn the duties of the president.” Anne

According to a lot of comments here, voters should also read FEC laws, too, because wow are they ever confused.

Screwtape
Member

Charles, “both” is the correct answer. The Dims are desperate and continuing to make Schiff up. Look at how that *ahem* shifty pencil-neck made up a transcript, AFTER sitting on it for a month, then called it a “parody” when caught. He might have been referring to himself. BIG QUESTION; IF presidential transcripts are now to be made public, I demand that Obozo’s be brought to light. We don’t even have his school transcripts or financial aid forms, but those are much less important than what he did in office. They are ALL literally our employees (thanks Tom Homan). I… Read more »

Peter
Member

I’ve read the full transcript more than once to try to find something, anything, that even remotely causes concern. I found nothing, and have a hard time trying to understand what Democrats are talking about. In one interview, a prominent Democrat Senator said that Trump used the word “though” at the end of a sentence, and that is an indicator of wrong doing. WTF is he talking about?! Are Democrats all brain damaged! The fact that Adam Schiff-For-Brains had to lie in committee and read into the minutes an entirely fake transcript. One he later confessed that he authored himself,… Read more »

John
Member

What Damming facts? I have read the transcript of the conversation did not see any thing that even approached
something illegal or unethical.

Willie Horton
Member

No one is above the law except the democrats. Democrats are the scourge of the earth.

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