Lawmaker Warns Against Impeachment of Trump, Says It Would Split Country Further Apart

By Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Janita Kan is a reporter based in New York covering the Justice Department, courts, and First Amendment.
September 28, 2019 Updated: September 30, 2019

A Democratic lawmaker has warned against the impeachment of President Donald Trump, saying that it would further split the country, after House leadership began an impeachment inquiry on Sept. 24.

Rep. Jeff Van Drew (D-N.J.) expressed his concerns about his party’s decision to move forward with the impeachment inquiry, saying that he thinks the odds are “very high” that “it’s not going to bear any fruit.”

“The odds are very high that this president will continue to be the president. The odds are very high that this president will be the nominee for the Republican party,” Van Drew said during an appearance on Fox News on Sept. 28.

“And meanwhile, while all this is going on, all the money is being spent, all the hearings are being had—and I don’t mind investigation if there’s something really there. If there’s something really there, obviously we’ve got to investigate. And we have been investigating, but to go into a full-blown impeachment is going to accomplish, unfortunately, certain goals that I don’t think are desirable,” he said.

Van Drew said he believes that the inquiry would leave the country more divided than before, adding that he doesn’t think the country has been so split apart since the Civil War.

“This is going to make it worse,” he said.

He added that the inquiry will also divert Congress members’ attention to more important issues in the country that need to be dealt with.

“We have a host of issues to deal with … that are so serious, whether it is the debt or the deficit, whether it is social security or medicare, whether it is having elections that are secure, whether it is the cost of medications,” he said.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced the impeachment inquiry on Sept. 24, alleging that Trump “seriously violated the Constitution.” The announcement was prompted by media reports of a whistleblower complaint centered around a phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. The transcript of the call was released Sept. 25 and the complaint was released Sept. 26.

The whistleblower, based on second-hand information, accused Trump of improper conduct for pressuring Zelensky to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, for Biden’s alleged involvement in the firing of a top Ukrainian prosecutor several years ago.

The transcript revealed that although Trump had asked Zelensky to look into Biden, he didn’t exert any pressure and neither was there any quid pro quo—which had been the center of a controversy.

House Republican leaders have criticized Pelosi and her Democratic colleagues for making the decision to open the inquiry prior to seeing the documents, and criticized them for failing to do their jobs as Congress members. Trump and other critics have suggested that the impeachment inquiry would distract the House from its legislative agenda in Congress.

On Sept. 25 at the United Nations, Trump told reporters he tried to talk to Pelosi about gun laws but said she didn’t appear interested.

“She’s lost her way. She’s been taken over by the radical left. She may be a radical left herself, but she really has lost her way. I spoke to her about guns yesterday. She didn’t even know what I was talking about. She’s not interested in guns,” Trump said.

“I’ll tell you what: Nancy Pelosi is not interested in guns and gun protection and gun safety. All she is thinking about is this. She’s been taken over by the radical left, the whole Democrat Party. And you take a look at what’s happening in the media today. The whole party is taken over by the left.”

Van Drew said that compared to the last session, he feels that fewer bills are being passed now and Congress “seldom” come together to get things done.

“I think probably only a third of the number of bills compared to [the] last session,” he said.

Pelosi told a press conference on Sept. 26 that the inquiry wouldn’t affect the House’s legislative processes.

“We continue to move forward on meeting the needs of the American people and making progress for them,” Pelosi said.

“At the same time, we take an oath to protect and defend the constitution. We can do both,” she added.

Meanwhile, Van Drew said that he would rather win an election by accomplishing goals rather than do it through “muddying somebody else up.”

“I would rather win an election by really accomplishing some amazing goals rather than just by muddying somebody else up,” he told Fox News. “You know what, in the course of the election people really know who this president is. He’s made it clear who he is. … So if we want to impeach, the people in the United States of America are going to have an election now in a year, they can go ahead in the ballot box and impeach if they desire to do so.”

Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Janita Kan is a reporter based in New York covering the Justice Department, courts, and First Amendment.