Sanders calls for an impeachment inquiry

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersPresident Trump faces Herculean task in first debate The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by JobsOhio - Trump's tax return bombshell New Biden campaign ad jabs at Trump's reported 0 income tax payments MORE (I-Vt.) on Thursday called for an impeachment inquiry against President TrumpDonald John TrumpCensus Bureau intends to wrap up count on Oct. 5 despite judge's order Top House Republican calls for probe of source of NYT Trump tax documents New Yorkers report receiving ballots with wrong name, voter addresses MORE, becoming the tenth 2020 presidential hopeful to do so.

“I believe the Judiciary Committee should begin impeachment inquiries,” Sanders said at a campaign rally in Henderson, Nev. “That is inquiries, not impeachment, to determine whether or not Trump has committed impeachable offenses.” 

“This president is not above the law, no president is above the law. This president must be held accountable."

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Sanders also warned that pursuing impeachment could play into Trump's hands.

“But here is the danger, which I think is why Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiAirline industry applauds Democrats for including aid in coronavirus relief package Democrats unveil scaled-down .2T coronavirus relief package Trump tax reveal roils presidential race MORE and many people are struggling: It may well be that Donald Trump wants to be impeached because he knows that in the Senate … there are 47 Democrats and not all of them today would impeach Trump," he explained, referencing the Speaker of the House.

“The challenge will be to walk down two paths simultaneously … We cannot make ordinary Americans think we have forgotten that they are working longer hours for lower wages, that they can’t afford health care, that their kids can’t go to college, that climate change is a huge issue." 

Sanders previously said that Congress should continue investigating Trump, but had not explicitly called for an impeachment inquiry.

The Vermont lawmaker's remarks come a day after special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerCNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump CNN anchor rips Trump over Stone while evoking Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting The Hill's 12:30 Report: New Hampshire fallout MORE addressed the findings of his two-year probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election for the first time.

Mueller reiterated that his investigation into election interference and possible obstruction of justice did not exonerate the president.

"After that investigation, if we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so," he said.

Mueller's report, released last month, found insufficient evidence to charge Trump with conspiring with Moscow to interfere in the 2016 elections but declined to make a prosecutorial decision about whether to the president obstructed subsequent investigations into the interference, instead outlining 10 “episodes” of behavior that were possibly obstructive.

Many Democrats have called for impeachment in the wake of the report, but party leadership has maintained that Democrats should stay the course of investigating the White House and that any impeachment attempt would be quashed in the GOP-controlled Senate.