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For the past 24 hours, Washington has been consumed by historic drama. After months of discouraging talk of impeachment, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she will launch a formal impeachment inquiry against President Trump.
"The actions of the Trump presidency revealed the dishonorable fact of the president's betrayal of his oath of office, betrayal of our national security and betrayal of the integrity of our elections," she said.
Pelosi — and a majority of House Democrats — reached the breaking point after the Trump administration blocked a whistleblower complaint from being heard in Congress. That complaint includes allegations that Trump pressured the president of Ukraine to investigate his political rival, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, and Biden's son, who did business in Ukraine.
Among that majority of House Democrats is Rep. Chrissy Houlahan, a Democratic congresswoman representing Pennsylvania's 6th Congressional District. She's one of seven moderates on a joint opinion article in the Washington Post that says the allegations against President Trump, if true, represent an impeachable offense.
Houlahan joined On Point's Anthony Brooks on Wednesday to discuss why she's in support of an impeachment inquiry.
"This is forward-leaning, this is the 2020 election cycle," Houlahan said of Trump's behavior. "This is not what candidate Trump did, this is what President Trump is purported to have done. And that has to do with our 2020 elections, which couldn't be more sacred."
On why the President’s purported behavior with Ukraine is a "bridge too far"
"If true, this is an issue of national security. This is literally money that was properly appropriated by Congress, bipartisan, that was headed for Ukraine, one of our allies, to defend against Russia, one of our foes. That was the first concern. The second was the idea that there's corruption. Where there's some sort of, 'If you do this, then I'll do that' kind of a thing, it's very, very worrisome. And, then, the last thing is that this is forward-leaning, this is the 2020 election cycle. This is not what candidate Trump did, this is what President Trump is purported to have done. And that has to do with our 2020 elections, which couldn't be more sacred."
"If these kinds of behaviors are, in fact, true, these are indeed impeachable offenses."Rep. Chrissy Houlahan, D-Penn.
On her decision to support an impeachment inquiry
"This is something that we obviously need to get to the bottom of. You know, this couldn't be more grave. This is not something that I take any pleasure in moving forward on. There is nothing more serious than thinking about the impeachment of our president. But, if these kinds of behaviors are, in fact, true, these are indeed impeachable offenses."
On whether her calls for an impeachment inquiry may have political repercussions
"I was really called to action in a unique way, about two or so years ago, to run for Congress. It never was in my plans, but I really felt compelled that at this really important time in our nation's history that I had something to offer, and that I could serve in this unique way. So, this isn't in any way a political calculation for me. If, for whatever reason, this ends up being some sort of consequence for me and my re-election, that wasn't why I decided to serve in the first place. This is, I think, the right thing to do. I think it's the moral thing to do. I'm worried that our president has abdicated and abandoned his oath of office. And I want to make sure that I understand what has happened."
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