O'Rourke on impeachment: 2020 vote may be best way to 'resolve' Trump

O'Rourke on impeachment: 2020 vote may be best way to 'resolve' Trump
© Getty Images

Former Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeCNN's O'Rourke town hall finishes behind Fox News, MSNBC Biden retains large lead over Sanders, other 2020 Dems in new Hill-HarrisX poll The Hill's Morning Report - Pelosi remains firm despite new impeachment push MORE (D-Texas) on Thursday appeared to back away from his calls to impeach President TrumpDonald John TrumpFeinstein, Iranian foreign minister had dinner amid tensions: report The Hill's Morning Report - Trump says no legislation until Dems end probes Harris readies a Phase 2 as she seeks to rejuvenate campaign MORE, pointing to the 2020 election as the best way to remove him from office.

In an interview with "CBS This Morning," the former Texas congressman, who announced his 2020 candidacy on Thursday, told Gayle King that the ballot box was "perhaps" the best place to take action against the president.

ADVERTISEMENT

It would be up to Congress, he added, to determine what the response to Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerHouse progressive: Pelosi 'has it right' on impeachment Democrats talk subpoena for Mueller Democratic Rep. Ro Khanna: 'I'm not there yet' on impeachment MORE's special counsel investigation of the president's campaign and Russia's election interference would be.

"How Congress chooses to address those set of facts and the findings which I believe we are soon to see from the Mueller report is up to them," O'Rourke told CBS.

"I think the American people are going to have a chance to decide this at the ballot box in November 2020, and perhaps that's the best way for us to resolve these outstanding questions," he added.

The comments appeared to be a moderation of his stance enunciated last year during a CNN town hall, when O'Rourke called Trump's defense of Russian President Vladimir Putin over election meddling during a joint press conference "collusion in action."

"[And when in] broad daylight, on Twitter, he asked his attorney general, Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsJeffrey Rosen officially sworn in as deputy attorney general House Democrats leave empty chair for McGahn at hearing MSNBC host: Barr 'the most dangerous person' who works for Trump MORE, to end the Russia investigation, I would say that's obstruction in action," O'Rourke added last October.

The El Paso native was questioned by King over whether he still believes Trump colluded with Russia during the 2016 election, which the president has frequently denied.

"It's beyond a shadow of a doubt to me that, if there was not collusion, there was at least the effort to collude with a foreign power, beyond the shadow of a doubt that if there was not obstruction of justice, there certainly was the effort to obstruct justice," O'Rourke responded.

Announcing his campaign in a video message Thursday, O'Rourke joined a crowded Democratic field that also includes the likes of Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersHarris readies a Phase 2 as she seeks to rejuvenate campaign 2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues Lee, Sanders introduce bill to tax Wall Street transactions MORE (I-Vt.), Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump says no legislation until Dems end probes Harris readies a Phase 2 as she seeks to rejuvenate campaign 2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues MORE (D-Mass.), Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump says no legislation until Dems end probes Harris readies a Phase 2 as she seeks to rejuvenate campaign 2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues MORE (D-Calif.) and Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth Gillibrand2020 Dems put spotlight on disabilities issues Overnight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — CBO officials testify on pros and cons of 'Medicare for All' | Booker vows to form White House office on abortion rights | Measles outbreak spreads with cases now in half the country Lee, Sanders introduce bill to tax Wall Street transactions MORE (D-N.Y.).

O'Rourke challenged Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzJim Carrey fires back at 'Joe McCarthy wanna-be' Cruz Hillicon Valley: Google delays cutting off Huawei | GOP senators split over breaking up big tech | Report finds DNC lagging behind RNC on cybersecurity GOP senators split over antitrust remedies for big tech MORE (R-Texas) in last year's midterms. Though he lost the election, the close race and his impressive fundraising gained him national attention.