- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 24, 2019

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is softening her resistance to impeaching President Trump after more than a dozen of her closest allies broke ranks to support the move.

Though she’s held back the reins on impeachment in favor of a methodical investigative approach, Mrs. Pelosi is meeting with her leadership team and caucus later on Tuesday to discuss the issue.

Mrs. Pelosi told reporters Tuesday afternoon that she would be making a public statement on impeachment at 5 p.m.

The whistleblower allegations that President Trump pressured Ukraine to investigate the business dealings of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden’s son Hunter Biden changed the game, the top-ranking House Democrat conceded in a CNN interview late Monday night, but Mrs. Pelosi wouldn’t say whether she fully backs impeachment.

When asked whether the caucus will be reaching a decision on impeachment later Tuesday, a senior Democratic aide told The Washington Times: “We’ll see.”

Another senior Democratic aide described the situation as backing the speaker into a corner but didn’t know for certain what action she would take.

Public opinion, one Mrs. Pelosi’s chief concerns, hasn’t shifted in favor of impeachment.

A poll from Politico released last week found that only 37% of voters supported launching the impeachment process, although half didn’t.

Democrats will also face pushback in the Republican-controlled Senate, where members such as Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina are defending the president and saying Mr. Trump will be transparent to prove he did nothing wrong.

The substance of the whistleblower report is still not clear, and it has not been made available to Congress.

Democrats are looking to vote on a resolution condemning the administration’s resistance toward handing over the whistleblower report tomorrow.

“It is imperative that the Acting Director of National Intelligence provide Congress the complaint, as specified under the law, and all requests for documents and testimony relating to this allegation. Furthermore, the whistleblower who brought this matter to the attention of the American people must be protected,” Mrs. Pelosi and her top lieutenant, Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer, said in a statement.

Many Democrats, including presidential hopefuls, have said that if that deadline passes or the allegations prove true, then they should move forward on impeachment.

These most recent allegations opened the floodgates Monday evening and Tuesday morning with more than a dozen coming out in support of impeachment.

Prominent Pelosi allies Reps. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut and Debbie Dingell of Michigan have been holding out until now.

“This is a matter of grave urgency,” Ms. DeLauro said in a statement. “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.”

Several vulnerable swing-district Democrats, with the most at risk politically to support impeachment, are also coming forward.

“It has become clear that our president has placed his personal interest above the national security of our nation,” New York Rep. Antonio Delgado said in a statement. “Having taken an oath of office before God and my fellow citizens to support and defend the Constitution of the United States, I can only conclude that Congress move forward with articles of impeachment.”

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