House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler said he personally believes President Donald Trump “richly deserves” to be impeached, arguing Trump has “violated the laws six ways from Sunday.”
“My personal view is that (Trump) richly deserves impeachment,” Nadler told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union” Sunday. “He has done many impeachable offenses, he’s violated the laws six ways from Sunday.”
Nadler has before said former special counsel Robert Mueller’s report presents “very substantial evidence” that Trump is “guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors” – an impeachable offense, but the chairman on Sunday stopped short of committing to launching an impeachment inquiry into the President. The House Judiciary Committee, Nadler said, needs “more evidence” to determine whether or not the chamber should take the first step in a long impeachment process.
The House Judiciary Committee on Friday announced they were moving to obtain the secret grand jury material from Mueller’s report in federal court, arguing they need more information to investigate the President. The lawsuit comes on the heels of Mueller’s testimony before Congress – testimony that Democrats advocating for impeachment say clearly detailed the President’s criminal conduct.
Nadler said Sunday that, despite the fact that fewer than half of House Democrats support launching an impeachment probe, Mueller’s testimony was an “inflection point” for the country and that as more evidence is uncovered the American people will come to “understand the gravity of the situation.”
But when asked by Tapper whether he agreed with California Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier, who said if Democrats don’t “take action” on impeachment by September 1, “we should just shut it down,” Nadler disagreed.
“We have to do this, whatever time frame there is and we’re doing it now. We’re engaged in an investigation into these different alleged crimes and to whether the President violated his oath of office,” Nadler said.
The lawsuit, filed Friday in DC District Court, quotes Nadler saying that articles of impeachment “are under consideration as part of the Committee’s investigation, although no final determination has been made.” The language in the lawsuit was approved by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, according to a source familiar with the matter.
Pelosi and Nadler have so far resisted the pressure from within their party to open an inquiry. Behind the scenes, Nadler has lobbied Pelosi.
CNN’s Jeremy Herb and Manu Raju contributed to this report.