The two most senior members of Connecticut’s House delegation, Rosa DeLauro and John Larson, now say they can foresee supporting impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump, in the wake of the scandal over the administration’s contacts with the Ukrainian government.
DeLauro is a top lieutenant of Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who has so far refused to countenance impeachment proceedings. The 3rd District representative issued a statement Monday evening saying “an impeachment inquiry may be the only recourse Congress has if the President is enlisting foreign assistance in the 2020 election. Congress must meet this pivotal moment in our nation’s history with decisive action.”
DeLauro had previously said she thought impeachment was a distraction from bread and butter issues of economic fairness and health care security that were top-of-mind for most voters.
A whistleblower from the intelligence community is reported to have alleged that Trump repeatedly called on the president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, to launch an investigation into the family of Joe Biden, one of Trump’s potential rivals in the 2020 presidential election.
Late Monday, the Washington Post reported that Trump told his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, to hold back almost $400 million in military aid for Ukraine at least a week before a phone call with Zelensky.
The administration has so far refused to hand over the details of the whistleblower report to Congress, as is required by law.
Meanwhile the 1st District’s John Larson, also previously a skeptic on impeachment, changed his tone Monday. He called for the acting director of national intelligence, Joseph Maguire, to testify before the House Intelligence Committee.
Larson said if Maguire declines to appear, “the Trump Administration has left Congress with no alternative but for the House to begin impeachment proceedings, which I will support.”
The two join the 4th Distric’s Jim Himes who became the sole member of Connecticut’s delegation to support impeachment back in June. Himes sits on the Intelligence Committee, which subpoenaed Maguire to appear before it on Thursday.
In an interview Monday on CNN, Himes called the president’s actions “extortion.”
“Of course it’s an impeachable offense,” he said. “And of course the administration is, as we speak, violating the law in terms of producing the whistleblower report. The law has no ambiguity in it. This is all starting to sound a little Nixonian. We need to see the whistleblower report.”