As the Ukraine scandal grows, House Democrats are considering a big aggressive step of creating a select committee on Trump impeachment.
A senior Democratic aide tells The Daily Beast that the idea of a select panel has “been raised by some members” as a way to consolidate impeachment proceedings around Donald Trump.
“No decisions have been made,” the aide said. “We understand some members may endorse this publicly. The caucus will make these decisions.”
One senior pro-impeachment Democratic operative said the idea of a select panel “had merit” in that it would mark an aggressive step forward for the party while potentially giving some distance to those Democratic members on the Judiciary Committee and elsewhere who remain uncomfortable with forcing the matter. Under House rules, Speaker Nancy Pelosi would have power to appoint not only the chair of a select committee but its members, as well.
A Select Committee would accomplish several goals at once. It would coordinate all of the impeachment related investigations into Trump into one committee. This would allow Democrats to build a storyline for Trump should be impeached to sway public opinion. The committee would also be able to more effectively fight against Trump’s obstruction of every part of every investigation. A select committee will have more powers than a regular committee. Democrats might be able to accelerate and bundle some of the many lawsuits against Trump and break his obstruction.
The committee would also give Speaker Pelosi a direct say over the mechanism of investigation. Pelosi would be able to appoint the chair of the committee and the Democratic members. Pelosi would be able to move impeachment forward, get the investigation that she wants, and be given more options than her current binary choice of impeaching or not impeaching Trump.
Trump’s Ukraine extortion showed that he is a national security threat, who needs to be dealt with now.
Action is coming, and it is a good bet that there will be a significant step forward on impeachment soon.
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Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association