Progressive firebrand Rep. Rashida Tlaib’s latest call for impeaching President Trump was brushed off by one of the top Democrats in the caucus on Wednesday.
“Impeachment is premature at this moment,” Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, the Democratic Caucus chair, told reporters.
Ms. Tlaib announced that she will be moving later in March to have the Judiciary Committee, which is she is a new member of, begin looking into impeaching the president. She said that impeachment proceedings need to start “today.”
Activists rallied with the congresswoman, and then later continued to call for impeachment outside Speaker Pelosi’s office.
Despite the hesitation from Democratic leadership to discuss impeachment, Ms. Tlaib contends that the party can rally around their concern about the president.
“I think every single colleague of mine agrees that there are impeachable offenses,” she said. “That’s one thing that we all agree on.”
In January, Ms. Tlaib drew some controversy when she told a cheering crowd that Democrats plan to “impeach the motherf—-er.”
Rep. Joe Cunningham, South Carolina Democrat, said the issue of impeachment gets a lot of traction on the cable news networks, but he sees it as a distraction.
“That is not an issue that is front and center in our district,” Mr. Cunningham told The Washington Times. “We’ve got problems with infrastructure. We’ve got problems with our schools, the cost of healthcare and things that are hurting people at their own kitchen tables.”
“We were sent up here to do a job to make Americans lives better and help alleviate the cost of healthcare and put an infrastructure package together and actually do work for the American people and I think there are a lot of distractions going on right now,” he said.
Mr. Jeffries said that Ms. Tlaib’s comments did not detract from party unity, as members have to represent their various districts, but stressed that overall the Democrats are not focused on removing the president.
“But within the umbrella of the House Democratic caucus, our position is clear. We are going to fight for kitchen table pocketbook issue-oriented agenda, while simultaneously engaging in our oversight responsibilities,” he said. “That does not involve impeachment.”