White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany responded to suggestions that some Democrats in Congress will attempt to impeach President Donald Trump in a bid to stop him from nominating a new justice to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg following her death last week.
“Apparently, it is now a high crime and misdemeanor worthy of impeachment for a lawfully elected president of the United States to exercise his constitutional duty,” she said. “Article Two, Section Two of the Constitution clearly states that the president ‘shall nominate’ justices of the Supreme Court when a vacancy occurs.”
She added that the Constitution does not offer a different interpretation of how the president should act.
“There’s nothing in the constitution that says the president stops being the president in an election year. The president has already appointed two strong conservative justices to the Supreme Court, justices who will interpret the constitution as written. Now he will nominate a third,” said McEnany, adding that suggesting an impeachment shows a “blatant disregard for the U.S. Constitution.”
McEnany noted that “we’re one vote away from seeing our religious liberty votes stripped away from our free speech stripped away, from our Second Amendment being stripped away … just one vote.”
Over the weekend, after Ginsburg’s death was confirmed, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said that Trump’s nominee for the high court will receive a vote on the Senate. Trump said on Tuesday that he will name a judge on Saturday at the White House.
Following the statements, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was asked on ABC News about the possibility of using impeachment as an option to stall the confirmation of Trump’s nominee.
“We have our options. We have arrows in our quiver that I’m not about to discuss right now, but the fact is we have a big challenge in our country,” Pelosi said in response, without elaborating. “This president has threatened to not even accept the results of the election.”
When she was asked again about impeachment, Pelosi said that Democrats will “use every arrow in our quiver.”
“Pelosi will not rule out impeaching this president for doing his job,” McEnany said Tuesday. “[Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez] said impeachment is an option on the table while Schumer stood by approvingly,” she said, referring to Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.).
Ocasio-Cortez, a Democrat from New York, was asked in a news conference Sunday about whether the House should use impeachment against Trump and Attorney General William Barr.
There has been “an enormous amount of law-breaking in the Trump administration,” and the attorney general is “unfit for office” and has “pursued potentially law-breaking behavior,” the freshman congresswoman said in response.
However, Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), a former vice presidential nominee, said in an interview that it would be “foolish” to impeach. “I can’t see virtually any Senate Democrats agreeing with it,” he added.