AOC: Democrats’ refusal to impeach Trump a ‘bigger national scandal’ than his behavior – Washington Examiner

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez declared her exasperation with Democratic leadership for their refusal to move forward with impeachment proceedings against President Trump as yet another controversy rocks his administration.

A two-month truce with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi cracked just before midnight Saturday when the freshman congresswoman from New York fired a volley on Twitter attacking her own party.

“At this point, the bigger national scandal isn’t the president’s lawbreaking behavior – it is the Democratic Party’s refusal to impeach him for it,” Ocasio-Cortez said on her personal account, which has more than 5 million followers.

Despite the late hour, Ocasio-Cortez’s tweet instantly became a social media flash point, garnering nearly 50,000 “likes” in the first 90 minutes and thousands of comments either cheering her on or encouraging the 29-year-old to rethink her stance.

Ocasio-Cortez responded to one comment from the Atlantic‘s James Fallows, who said, “[In my opinion], this is ‘false equivalence’ of its own sort. What Trump is doing remains objectively the biggest threat, scandal, and problem. Second-ranking: the silent acquiescence of the GOP Senate. Then: it’s time for House to act.”

The congresswoman replied: “It is one thing for a sitting president to break the law. It’s another to let him. The integrity of our democracy isn’t threatened when a president breaks the law. It‘s threatened when we do nothing about it. The GOP’s silence & refusal to act shouldn’t be a surprise. Ours is.”

The late-night salvo from Ocasio-Cortez comes two months after she and Pelosi met and appeared to move past a feud that blew wide open when the speaker dismissed the influence of Ocasio-Cortez and her “squad” of fellow high-profile liberal freshman congresswomen that includes Reps. Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and Ayanna Pressley.

The tweets also follow a tumultuous week for Trump due to the emergence of a whistleblower complaint from within in the U.S. Intelligence Community. This complaint, which the Trump administration is withholding from Congress, reportedly relates to a July phone call in which Trump pressured the Ukrainian president to investigate former VP Joe Biden’s son Hunter, who did business in Ukraine while his father was vice president.

Joe Biden has called for a new investigation in the House while three Democrat-led committees in the lower chamber were already investigating whether Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani improperly pressured the Ukrainian government to damage the elder Biden’s presidential election chances.

Democrats see similarities in this standoff and the Russia controversy that dogged the Trump presidency for its first two and a half years. And calls for impeachment have only grown louder since former special counsel Robert Mueller completed his two-year Russia investigation earlier this year. Although Mueller’s team did not find criminal conspiracy between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin, the special counsel outlined several instances of possible obstruction of justice that many Democrats argue lay the groundwork for an impeachment inquiry.

Even as more than half the Democratic caucus supports an impeachment inquiry, Pelosi has resisted a formal House vote that would authorize the House Judiciary Committee to launch an official impeachment inquiry. The California Democrat has called impeachment “divisive” and said Americans want the House to proceed cautiously, yet she has been unable to mollify an increasingly agitated base.

In a clear sign of a growing rift inside the party, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler announced earlier this month that his panel is conducting an official investigation. Pelosi said she supports Nadler and is “very pleased” with his committee’s work, but stopped short of backing his claim. She walked out on the press roughly two weeks ago, shutting down questions about whether the House is conducting a formal impeachment inquiry.


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