Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, a Democrat, told viewers on MSNBC on Tuesday that President Donald Trump is “grinding our institutions into smithereens” and that the White House needs to immediately turn over a whistleblower complaint from an intelligence official concerned about Trump asking the president of Ukraine for help in the 2020 U.S. presidential election.
It is illegal to solicit and receive foreign assistance in a domestic U.S. election.
Just an hour or so after Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi reversed months of hesitance on the Trump impeachment front – announcing a formal impeachment inquiry – Bennet fielded questions about impeachment versus letting voters decide in November of 2020. Specifically, Bennet was asked how the founding fathers would view the current situation.
“Above all else they would say we shouldn’t have a president who doesn’t believe in democracy, who doesn’t believe in the rule of law, who doesn’t believe in freedom of the press, who doesn’t believe in the independence of the judiciary, who thinks it’s all right to talk to foreign governments about how they can help him get reelected,” Bennet said, referring to Trump’s admission he asked the president of Ukraine to investigate the son of political rival Joe Biden.
Bennet was then asked if the nation’s institutions would be more stable under Vice President Mike Pence if Trump were to be removed from office.
“I don’t think they could be more unstable than with Donald Trump as president,” said Bennet, who’s also seeking the Democratic nomination to run for president. “He is grinding our institutions into smithereens.”
Bennet noted that Pelosi is trying to get a bipartisan statement out of the House that the White House should send over the whistleblower’s complaint to the House Intelligence Committee immediately.
Bennet had just voted in favor of a unanimous consent request in the Senate making the very same demand, with no Republicans objecting. That made Bennet wonder what Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell may already know about the whistleblower’s complaint, which the administration has blocked from going to Congress – an apparent violation of law.
U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse, a Boulder Democrat who represents the eastern portion of the Vail Valley in Congress – and an early advocate for an impeachment inquiry — issued a statement on the day’s developments, which also saw an overwhelming majority of House Democrats supporting an impeachment inquiry:
Congressman Neguse Statement on House Impeachment Inquiry
Washington, D.C.— Congressman Joe Neguse, who serves on the House Judiciary Committee, released the following statement after an announcement late this afternoon from Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi that the House will open a formal impeachment inquiry. Congressman Neguse was the first Colorado lawmaker to call for an impeachment inquiry earlier this year in May 2019.
“The President has shown complete disregard for the law, the office of the Presidency and our Constitution. In the last week, we learned that he pressured Ukrainian officials to launch an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden. There is no question that inviting political interference in our democratic process is an impeachable offense.”
“These new allegations come on the heels of wholesale obstruction of Congress that the President has been engaged in since the release of the Special Counsel’s report. He has ignored subpoenas, instructed Administration officials not to come before Congress, exercised false executive privilege and now refuses to hand over this whistleblower complaint and the underlying evidence in its entirety, which Congress is entitled to by law.”
“Donald Trump has abused the Presidency and the law. We must move forward with impeachment immediately.”