Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Tuesday formally launched an impeachment drive she had rejected all year, a momentous decision that carries huge implications for the 2020 elections.
In an announcement notable for its formal tone, Pelosi, who had rejected moving forward with impeachment for months, framed the move as a necessary response to the long trail of allegations against President Trump.
“Our republic endures because of the wisdom of our Constitution enshrined in three co-equal branches that act as checks and balances,” Pelosi said from a flag-adorned Speaker’s Balcony behind her office in the Capitol. “The president must be held accountable. No one is above the law.”
More than two-thirds of House Democrats have now said they support impeaching the president. At least 45 Democrats have announced their support since Sunday.
The decision to open the impeachment inquiry follows months of Democratic in-fighting over whether or not to impeach the president. House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler (D., N.Y.) has repeatedly said his committee has already been conducting an inquiry, while Pelosi had been reluctant to proceed until Tuesday.