Political historian: 'I don't believe that you should base impeachment upon politics'

Political historian Allan Lichtman said on Thursday that even though Democrats have grounds to begin an impeachment inquiry against President TrumpDonald John TrumpCould Donald Trump and Boris Johnson be this generation's Reagan-Thatcher? Merkel backs Democratic congresswomen over Trump How China's currency manipulation cheats America on trade MORE, he argued that it shouldn't be a political decision. 

“I don’t believe that you should base impeachment upon politics,” Lichtman, an American University professor who has correctly predicted the outcome of the previous nine presidential elections, told Hill.TV. 

“But in this case, there is no rift between doing what is constitutionally and morally right and what is politically right,” he added. 

Lichtman said the division among Democrats over whether to pursue an impeachment inquiry against Trump shows they are struggling over doing what is right and what is “politically expedient."

“Impeachment now is now on everyone’s lips, although I would say some like [Speaker] Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDHS chief to Pelosi: Emergency border funding 'has already had an impact' The Hill's Morning Report: Trump walks back from 'send her back' chants Trump faces new hit on deficit MORE [D-Calif.] would like us to zip our lips about impeachment,” he said. “Democrats seem to be struggling between doing what is right and doing what is politically expedient.” 

A growing number of House Democrats have called for an impeachment inquiry following special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerTop Republican considered Mueller subpoena to box in Democrats Kamala Harris says her Justice Dept would have 'no choice' but to prosecute Trump for obstruction Dem committees win new powers to investigate Trump MORE’s remarks last week when he said he didn’t have the authority to charge Trump with any crimes.

Pelosi has long resisted pursuing impeachment, and Democratic leaders are pursuing other avenues, including holding Attorney General William BarrWilliam Pelham BarrHouse gears up for Mueller testimony History in the House: Congress weathers unprecedented week Court filings show Trump, Cohen contacts amid hush money payments MORE in contempt over Mueller's report.

Additionally, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerTrump knocks Mueller after deal struck for him to testify House Democrats request briefing on Epstein, Acosta Nadler apologized after repeatedly calling Hope Hicks 'Ms. Lewandowski' at hearing MORE (D-N.Y.) is looking to launch public hearings on Mueller’s investigation, even though the now-former special counsel has made it clear he does not want to testify. 

—Tess Bonn