Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) is doubling down on her push for Congress to move quickly to impeach President Trump if solid evidence emerges of collusion with the Russian government.
“The only thing that I am focused on is credible investigations to bring out the facts. … If the facts are there, then I think we should move very quickly to do something about it. And if there was collusion, and any support for undermining our democracy, I think the president should be impeached,” Waters said Friday on C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers” program.
“I’ve said that, and that’s where I stand.”
Multiple U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded that Russian hackers interfered in last year’s elections for the express purpose of helping Trump win, and both the Senate and House Intelligence committees are investigating the nature and extent of the intrusion.
As those probes evolve, numerous reports have emerged linking members of Trump’s inner circle directly to Kremlin officials. The White House has fervently maintained that those communications were innocuous, and no evidence has surfaced of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
But the Democrats, who smell smoke and suspect fire, want an independent, outside investigation to remove any doubt.
“Russia interfered with our elections and they attempted to undermine our democracy,” Waters said. “And we need to know whether or not there was collusion [and] who was involved in that.
“It’s important to get the facts.”
Waters, who has emerged as perhaps the most vocal critic of Trump and his administration, raised eyebrows earlier in the week when she seemed to suggest that shadowy claims that Russia has lewd tapes of Trump were accurate. Those claims were contained in a 35-page dossier — largely unconfirmed — that was drafted by a former British intelligence officer at the behest of Democratic campaign operatives last year.
Waters on Friday said she never meant to suggest the bulk of the information in the dossier has been confirmed.
“I did not make that claim that the dossier was accurate,” she said on “Newsmakers.”
“The dossier is just one part of all kind of evidence that’s rolling in [and] some may be more factual than other. … The only thing that I am focused on is credible investigations to bring out the facts.”
Amid the ongoing saga, a number of Democrats have questioned whether FBI Director James Comey is reliably non-partisan, or if his actions last year during the FBI’s probe into Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonMeghan McCain: 'SNL' parodies made me feel like 'laughing stock of the country' Hill: Trump reelection would spur 'one constitutional crisis after another' Trump defends indicted GOP congressman MORE’s emails make him the wrong person to investigate potential Russia-Trump ties.
On that issue, there’s no mystery where Waters stands.
“I don’t think he’s credible,” she said. “The long-term and historical practice is that you don’t do that, you don’t interfere with an election, and certainly not 11 days prior to the election date.”
“Newsmakers” is set to air Sunday on C-SPAN at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.