Trump's stonewalling of congressional oversight has led to a deluge of lawmakers calling for an impeachment inquiry.
Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are beginning to reach their limit on Trump's blatant obstruction of their legitimate oversight inquiries, leading to a deluge of members of Congress calling for the start of an impeachment inquiry to help force the president to comply with their requests.
So far, at least 29 members of both the House and Senate have called for the start of an impeachment inquiry, with five more going as far as saying Trump should be impeached, according to a Shareblue count.
Almost all of the members calling for an impeachment inquiry are Democrats, though one Republican, Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan, said Trump has committed impeachable acts — an admission that angered his fellow GOP lawmakers, given that it is wildly off message for a party that's trying to shield Trump from any accountability whatsoever.
For many of the lawmakers, launching an impeachment inquiry is not something they say they relish in doing.
But they say Trump's refusal to follow the law and instead block his administration from complying with subpoenas for documents and interviews with administration officials has left them with no other choice.
So far, Trump has blocked numerous current and former administration officials from complying with congressional subpoenas, including former White House counsel Don McGahn and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin — who is refusing to turn over Trump's tax returns even though the law clearly states he has to.
Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon (D-PA), one of the Democrats calling for an impeachment inquiry, said on Tuesday that Congress has "patiently tried to work within traditional means" to get information related to their oversight investigations, and that Trump's defiance leaves Congress with no other choice but to start an impeachment inquiry.
"The President's refusal to produce evidence or permit witness testimony defies not only the rule of law but the basic protections of our Constitution," Scanlon said in a statement. "No one is above the rule of law. The time has come to start an impeachment inquiry because the American people deserve to know the truth and have the opportunity to judge the gravity of the evidence and charges leveled against the President."
Later on Tuesday evening, Scanlon said in a CNN appearance that an impeachment inquiry would be a vehicle to "get the facts out, get the evidence out," giving Congress the chance to decide whether impeachment is warranted.
Other Democratic lawmakers feel that the public is clamoring for accountability from Trump, and that an impeachment inquiry would satisfy that growing number of people.
"There's a growing realization in Congress that impeachment is inevitable," Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY), one of the Democrats who wants to start an impeachment inquiry, said earlier in the week.
"There's a great drumbeat in the country for us to do something and hold this president accountable," Yarmuth added on CNN Wednesday morning.
So far, it's unclear whether the House Judiciary Committee — which oversees any impeachment inquiries — will actually start an impeachment investigation.
House Democrats are meeting behind closed doors on Wednesday to discuss how to move forward, according to Politico.
But if Trump continues to obstruct legitimate congressional oversight, the push for an impeachment inquiry will only grow stronger.
And with Trump showing no signs of complying with the law and cooperating with congressional investigations, it seems like Trump is asking to be impeached.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.