Beto O’Rourke became the latest Democratic presidential candidate to support the idea of impeaching President Trump – arguing that the president’s comments earlier in the week that he’d be open to accepting foreign intelligence on his 2020 rivals is reason enough to see him ousted from office.
While Trump has walked back those comments, his words have stirred up calls for impeachment from many Democratic presidential contenders looking to win the Oval Office next year.
“I think the president's admission this week that he would take help from a foreign government going forward is all you need to know about the importance of impeachment and that impeachment beginning now,” O’Rourke said during an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
O’Rourke’s call comes after another Democratic candidate, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, said she would support impeachment proceedings against Trump.
Klobuchar added that "it's illegal" to take something of value from a foreign country to use in a campaign. She said Trump is "sending out signals" like he did in 2016, when he publicly urged Russia to find and publish Hillary Clinton's emails.
Klobuchar says "it's illegal" to take something of value from a foreign country to use in a campaign. She says Trump is "sending out signals" like he did in 2016, when he publicly urged Russia to find and publish Hillary Clinton's emails.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democratic presidential candidate, also said on Friday that Trump's stated willingness to accept a foreign power's help in his 2020 campaign should spur Congress to begin impeachment hearings.
De Blasio told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" on Friday that Trump's assertion in an ABC interview that he would not have to call the FBI if a foreign country offered information about an opponent was "openly treasonous."
De Blasio called the interview "the last straw" and said Congress should begin impeachment hearings. He said the nation can no longer accept "the notion of a president who openly invites interference in our election."
The idea of impeachment, while popular with Democrats' base voters, is nowhere near the majority support with the general public, polls indicate, and the candidates recent comments raise questions about how willing Democrats are to keep bending norms of governmental behavior, such as the usually bright line between politics and federal prosecutions, that Trump has shattered.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.