Liberal firebrand and longtime impeachment advocate Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said Tuesday that the articles of impeachment against President Trump do not go far enough.
The same sentiment coursed through progressive circles, as liberal activists and far-left lawmakers bristled that Mr. Trump got off easy.
Ms. Ocasio-Cortez said she’ll settle for the two articles of impeachment — abuse of power and obstruction of Congress — that were unveiled on Tuesday.
“Of course, I am in the camp where I feel that there should have been more articles. I think obstruction of justice absolutely should have been an article. I’m also supportive of emoluments being included in the articles,” the freshman New York Democrat said. “I understand that the caucus is where it’s at and it took so long for us to get to this point that I’m glad that we have two.”
Rep. Al Green, a Texas Democrat who earlier had introduced articles of impeachment against the president three times, felt similarly, telling The Washington Times he conveyed as much to his colleagues in a recent memo.
However, he wouldn’t say whether he planned to try to introduce additional articles before the House votes.
“We can wait to see if the Senate will convict and remove. But if they don’t, then there’s still work to be done,” he said.
His last attempt to force a vote, centered on racism charges, failed to get the majority of Democrats behind it.
But with House Democrats days away from voting on articles of impeachment, at least one progressive group that has spent months advocating for that outcome is disappointed.
CREDO Action, one of a number of progressive groups lobbying for impeachment since the summer, accused Democratic leadership of leaving too much out of the articles of impeachment.
“It’s beyond overdue for House Democrats to introduce articles of impeachment, but failing to include articles addressing most of the high crimes and misdemeanors Trump has committed is a dangerous abdication of responsibility,” CREDO Action co-director Heidi Hess said in a statement.
“But by not including Trump’s bigotry, corruption, and self-enrichment, Democrats are telling the communities that Trump has terrorized that they are on their own,” she added.
Rep. Rashida Tlaib, who went viral for telling supporters on the night of her election that Democrats would “impeachment the m—————r,” also criticized the scope of impeachment resolution as insufficiently racial.
“Let’s be very clear: It’s *racist* abuse of power,” the Michigan Democrat tweeted. “This President targeted people solely based on their ethic background, their faith, disability, sexual orientation and even source of income.”
Ms. Tlaib and Ms. Ocasio-Cortez are members of a group of liberal freshman Democratic women known as “The Squad.” The group put pressure on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat, to pursue impeachment long before the Ukraine scandal that led to the articles announced Tuesday.
The two articles accuse Mr. Trump of leveraging a White House meeting and nearly $400 million in military assistance to pressure the Ukrainian president to open investigations into a theory of Ukraine election meddling and into a political rival, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden.
The text of the articles alluded to other alleged misconduct by the president, but it left out any specific reference to any of the other investigations that were part of the impeachment inquiry.
CREDO said it should have also expanded to include a number of other complaints against the president including abusing executive power to “promote hatred and incite violence” and “swindle the American people.”
The group has been critical of Mrs. Pelosi’s impeachment strategy for months, frustrated with her stance on taking a slow, methodical, investigatory approach.
Many moderate Democrats, however, warned against taking a “kitchen sink” approach to impeachment — saying it should be kept focused on the one issue that united the caucus.
When asked about the narrow scope of the articles on Tuesday, Mrs. Pelosi said it’s more important to focus on what actually is in there.
She also noted that while Democrats might strongly disagree and find the president’s policies abhorrent — that’s ultimately not something to be hashed out with articles of impeachment.
“That’s not what impeachment is about,” Mrs. Pelosi said. “All that, that’s the election. That has nothing to do with the facts of the case of the president violating his oath of office.”