House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) wondered on Fox & Friends on Saturday why House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) would leave town for two weeks on a scheduled congressional recess if she were really serious about impeaching President Donald Trump.
Scalise asked a number of questions about Democrats and impeachment: “If they were so serious, why did Adam Schiff have to start his committee hearing with a parody, a joke, trying to make fun of this and actually lying about what really happened and trying to make up a conversation between the president and Ukraine President [Volodymyr] Zelensky?
“And think about this — Nancy Pelosi is saying she wants to start impeachment proceedings against a president of the United States,” the congressman added. “She didn’t even require a House floor vote, which has always been the case to start impeachment. But, if she really thought he should be removed, why did she then leave town for two weeks?”
Scalise said he thought if Democrats were really serious about impeaching Trump, they would be in Washington “day and night” investigating to figure out what happened.
“We need to stay in Washington”
Other lawmakers have also called on Pelosi to cancel the recess and focus on impeachment, according to The Hill — including Democrats.
“Congress is about to leave for a two-week recess — we should not do that. We need to stay in Washington to work for the American people,” Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) of the House Progressive Caucus said.
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) also jumped in to say she didn’t want the recess at this critical time. “Trump clearly sees the Oval Office as his campaign office. We cannot let the occupant make a mockery of our Constitution any longer. Congress must cancel the upcoming recess so we can finally impeach this president,” she said.
Even some Democrat presidential candidates expressed their opinions on the matter. Beto O-Rourke tweeted: “The House should cancel its break and start impeachment proceedings now. As the whistleblower made clear: Every day Trump is in office, our democracy is less safe. We can’t wait to act.”
Fellow 2020 hopeful Julián Castro said he thought impeachment proceedings should begin now.
“This is a matter of grave importance”
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) said on Wednesday, however, that there were no plans to cancel the planned recess — and he didn’t think there should be, either.
“I think it is very important that members go home to their constituents and explain what they are thinking. Seven of them did it in an op-ed. All of our members need to do it to their constituents,” he told reporters. “This is a matter of grave importance, and the American people need to understand what is occurring. We think that’s very, very important.”
Here’s the real question: Can Democrats afford to let impeachment get out of the news cycle over the next two weeks? And an even better one: Are they trying to give Biden cover and let questions about his Ukraine activities die down while they are out of town?