Beyer Calls For Impeachment Inquiry
Washington, May 21, 2019
Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) today issued the following statement:
“The time has come for the House of Representatives to open an impeachment inquiry into the conduct of President Trump.
“Endorsing such a course is not easy, and I do not do so lightly, but I believe that the President has left Congress no other option but to pursue it. When I came to Congress I swore an oath ‘to defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.’
“President Trump has shown utter contempt for the Constitution from the moment he took office, but we are now faced with evidence of actions that strongly resemble high crimes and misdemeanors. The behavior repeatedly identified in the redacted Mueller Report meets every standard for the classification of ‘obstruction of justice’ of which I am aware. He has compounded that fact by engaging in escalating, illegal stonewalling of Congress as my colleagues and I have attempted to engage in oversight, a primary responsibility of the legislative branch under the Constitution.
“We are aware of other potential crimes committed by this President, including tax fraud and violations of campaign finance laws, both alleged under oath by his former attorney. Congress must investigate these allegations to determine their veracity, but the President’s illegal cover-up, most recently evidenced by his preventing the Secretary of the Treasury and the former White House Counsel from honoring Congressional subpoenas, leaves us little recourse to do so.
“From the first time I was asked about impeachment I have always said that I believed that such a serious action must be fully justified by the facts, must be done with great care, and it must have bipartisan support. I believe the facts fully justify an impeachment inquiry, and I have every confidence in the ability of Chairman Nadler, the House Judiciary Committee, and Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s ability to pursue one if they decide it is the proper course. Congressman Amash’s brave public statement makes support for an impeachment inquiry bipartisan, and I have privately spoken to other Republicans who believe he is right but are unwilling to say so publicly.
“The most important consideration for me in evaluating whether this course of action is correct has been the views of my constituents. Their belief in the need to launch an impeachment inquiry – as expressed to me in calls, letters, and conversations – has grown to a crescendo in recent weeks. I believe that my constituents are right, and I support the initiation of an impeachment inquiry to examine evidence of criminal acts committed by President Trump.”
Beyer, who had not previously backed an impeachment inquiry, is the first member of Virginia’s Congressional delegation to do so.