- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 30, 2019

Former Texas congressman and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke on Wednesday said that if Congress fails to move swiftly on impeaching President Trump, it could mean the end of U.S. democracy.

“Act now, or lose our democracy forever — that is the choice before us,” Mr. O’Rourke said on MSNBC.

He said he understands political considerations, but that the moment “demands more of us.”

“If ever there were a moment to act, it is this one. … If Congress fails to act now, it’s hard to see them acting in the future,” Mr. O’Rourke said. “And if they fail to do that, we have set the precedent that some people — because of the position that they hold — are above the law in this country.”

“That begins the end of our democracy, and we cannot allow that to happen,” he said.

Mr. O’Rourke had previously said Congress should start impeachment proceedings against Mr. Trump, but he and other Democrats have said special counsel Robert Mueller’s statement on Wednesday ups the ante even more.

Mr. Mueller said he was never going to be able to charge Mr. Trump with anything tied to the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election because of a Justice Department policy that generally bars a sitting president from being indicted.

But Mr. Mueller also said he could not exonerate the president, amid accusations that Mr. Trump obstructed justice by trying to hamper or undermine the investigation.

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