Two chairpersons of major House of Representatives committees who represent parts of the area politicians have joined the cacophony of Democratic lawmakers calling for a formal impeachment hearing into President Donald Trump.
House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairmen Eliot Engel announced on Tuesday, July 30 that he supports the opening of an inquiry into the president, which has received support from nearly half of elected Democrats. Engel's district includes parts of Westchester and the Bronx.
Following Engel’s announcement, Congresswoman Nita Lowey issued a statement in support of such an inquiry. Lowey, whose district includes much of Westchester as well as Rockland, chairs the House Appropriations Committee.
“Since he took office, House Democrats have been aggressively and thoughtfully investigating potentially illegal activity by the President and others on his campaign and in his administration,” she said in a statement. “The administration has done all it can to withhold information, leading to various legal efforts to secure testimony and evidence.
The statement comes days after former special counsel Robert Mueller offered brief, protected answers in front of a pair of House committees last week, offering veiled and nearly no new information about his investigation into claims that there was Russian interference in Trump’s 2016 election win that landed him in the Oval Office.
“Former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation produced a report that shed light on the depths of systemic deception that appears to be second nature for the President and his advisors,” Lowey added.
“While the Special Counsel’s office did not indict the President, Mueller’s testimony before the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees made clear that there was no exoneration of the Trump administration, evidence of obstruction of justice leaves the President vulnerable to indictment after he leaves office, and Russia continues its efforts to steal our elections from the American people.
Engel said that “the president abused the power of his office in an effort to stymie a legitimate investigation into his campaign’s involvement with Russia. Mr. Mueller chose to follow Justice Department guidance that a sitting president can’t be indicted. The Constitution empowers Congress with checks and balances to address high crimes and misdemeanors by a sitting president.
“The American people want, and deserve, the truth. Mr. Mueller’s testimony provided ample evidence that the president committed obstruction of justice, and I believe the House must pursue a formal impeachment inquiry.”
According to reports, at least 112 other U.S. House members --- 111 Democrats, and independent Justin Amash -- have come out in support of an impeachment inquiry, including 16 members of the House Judiciary Committee that would oversee the proceedings. There are 235 Democrats in the House.
“The House Judiciary Committee should move forward with an impeachment inquiry. I will continue to strongly support the important efforts of Democrats on the House Judiciary, Intelligence, Oversight, and other committees who are working to hold President Trump accountable to the American people and believe an impeachment inquiry will strengthen our hand in uncovering the truth,” Lowey said.
Engel noted that “questions about the abuses and corruption of this administration require Congress to press ahead with its investigations and follow the facts where they lead us. I’ve pushed to get answers about Trump’s cozy relationship with Vladimir Putin, unconstitutional emoluments the president has received, and the president’s deep conflicts of interest around the world.
“The president’s repeated abusers have brought American democracy to a perilous crossroads. Following the guidance of the Constitution - which I have sworn to uphold - is the only way to achieve justice.”
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