House Judiciary Democrat backs impeachment inquiry

House Judiciary Democrat backs impeachment inquiry
© Greg Nash

Rep. Mary Gay ScanlonMary Gay ScanlonDemocrats introduce resolution condemning acts of violence against the press Behind every gun law is a mom marching for her children COVID-19 is no excuse for Attorney General Barr to skirt the rule of law MORE (D-Pa.), the vice chairwoman of the House Judiciary Committee, called for an impeachment inquiry into President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew Jersey incumbents steamroll progressive challengers in primaries Tucker Carlson ratchets up criticism of Duckworth, calls her a 'coward' Trump on Confederate flag: 'It's freedom of speech' MORE on Tuesday, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

“The President’s refusal to produce evidence or permit witness testimony defies not only the rule of law but the basic protections of our Constitution,” Scanlon said Tuesday in a statement. “No one is above the rule of law. The time has come to start an impeachment inquiry because the American people deserve to know the truth and to have the opportunity to judge the gravity of the evidence and charges leveled against the President.”

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An inquiry, distinct from actual impeachment, would involve a formal House investigation into potential impeachment charges, with the House potentially voting to impeach if a majority believes it is warranted.

Scanlon’s comments reflect a heightening debate between leaders in the Democratic House. Last night, House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiClash looms over next coronavirus relief bill Trump's WHO decision raises bipartisan concerns in House Five takeaways from PPP loan data MORE (D-Calif.) and her allies in House leadership reportedly sparred with other leaders including Reps. David Cicciline (D-R.I.) and Jamie RaskinJamin (Jamie) Ben RaskinDemocrats start cracking down on masks for lawmakers Clyburn threatens to end in-person coronavirus committee hearings if Republicans won't wear masks The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Dems, GOP dig in on police reform ahead of House vote MORE (D-Md.) about the wisdom or necessity of impeachment proceedings. Pelosi reportedly argued in favor of allowing the various House investigations into Trump and the White House to take their course.

Raskin, Scanlon’s colleague on the Judiciary committee, told The Washington Post Tuesday that “most of us have been led to the position that an impeachment inquiry is warranted,” citing the White House’s repeated defiance of House subpoenas, most recently by former White House counsel Don McGahn Tuesday.

Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerNadler wins Democratic primary Voters must strongly reject the president's abuses by voting him out this November Clyburn threatens to end in-person coronavirus committee hearings if Republicans won't wear masks MORE (D-N.Y.) has also reportedly recommended an impeachment inquiry to Pelosi, but after she rebuffed the idea and said it could undermine other House investigations, expressed agreement with Pelosi’s position.