House

Dem lawmaker: 'Quite clear' Trump committed impeachable offenses

Democratic Rep. David Cicilline (R.I.) said Friday that he believes it is "quite clear" in special counsel Robert Mueller's report that President Trump committed impeachable offenses.

"We know for a fact obstruction of justice is an impeachable offense. There's no question about that. That is what is set forth in the special counsel's report," Cicilline said one day after the report's release. "We have additional evidence to collect, but I think it is quite clear that the president committed offenses which would constitute impeachable offenses."

Cicilline, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, on Thursday released a statement calling the report a "damning document" that paints a negative picture of Trump and his associates.

"As I continue to read the entire report, it is already evident to me that this is a damning document that outlines a series of misdeeds conducted by the President and his associates," Cicilline wrote of the redacted report. "In light of his misleading attempt to spin the report this morning, it's clear that the only reason Attorney General Barr has for keeping the full report from Congress is to protect the President."

The 400-plus-page, partially redact report outlines 10 instances of Trump potentially obstructing justice over the course of Mueller's 22-month investigation, including his firing of James Comey as FBI director.

House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) suggested Friday that impeachment proceedings against Trump were a possibility.

Cummings said the accounts of Trump's behavior depicted in the Mueller report are "at least 100 times worse" than former President Clinton's actions in the scandal that led to his impeachment in 1998.

"He probably feels emboldened because a lot of our Republican friends who will not lift a finger against him - as a matter of fact, they have acted as defense counsel for him - they now say, 'Oh, everything's fine. We've got to keep on doing what we're doing.' Well, I'm in disagreement with that. We've got to go against this. We've got to expose it," Cummings said. 

Still, other Democrats have cautioned against moving to impeach Trump.

"We certainly need to continue the investigative work to determine are there other ways this president is compromised or are there other offenses that rise to the level of removal from office," House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) said Friday. "But here we are less than 24 hours after the report, and I think we need as a caucus to have a discussion about what's the import of this and what's the way forward."

Cicilline on Friday shared a threatening voicemail he said he received after speaking out about he report.

"Hi, just a message for the corrupt, treasonous, piece of shit, f---ing Congressman Cicilline," the voicemail shared on Twitter states. "F--- you, you traitor. I cannot wait until you're rotting in a cell in Gitmo. F--- you."

"I'm not scared," the lawmaker said in response to the voicemail. "Our democracy is too important to let the bullies win."

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