Impeachment is how we stop what we cannot tolerate. The authors of the Constitution included it as a way to stop presidents who attack our democracy in exactly the way the Trump administration is attacking our country now. Impeachment will stop Donald Trump’s abuses of power and prevent the next president from repeating them.
Our country is at a crossroads, and what we do now will determine what kind of country exists for generations to come.
We can either allow powerful men like Trump to abuse their power and divide us based on the color of our skin or where we were born or our religion, or we can unite, impeach the president, and make this country work for all of us.
Both MoveOn and By the People have been calling for impeachment for two years. But we believe this is an important moment to double down on that call for impeachment, because the Mueller investigation is complete, and even the redacted report has shown conclusive evidence that Trump obstructed justice and ordered his subordinates to do the same. The House could begin an impeachment inquiry immediately if its Democratic leadership wanted to. And in the wake of the Mueller report, there's more momentum than ever before for impeachment, with dozens of Democrats and even one Republican in Congress calling for it, along with at least nine candidates for president. But most Democratic leaders in Congress are not yet pursuing their constitutional duty to hold the president accountable.
We’re under no illusion that impeachment will happen tomorrow or that the Senate would follow the House's lead and remove an impeached president (something that has never happened in American history). But with Trump ramping up his abuse of power, inciting violence against Muslim communities, and continuing to order violations of law in order to separate families, the moral clarion call to pursue impeachment is clear. The House has the power to successfully impeach Donald Trump and show that they are unafraid of holding Trump accountable for his egregious actions.
What is our theory of change?
This is an important moment to take a moral stance to hold Trump accountable for abuses of power—from family separation to the Muslim Ban—and obstruction of justice. We don't want to see ourselves in a place where future generations ask us why we didn't pursue impeachment or, at least, work to ensure we took every possible step we could.
The House can impeach Donald Trump. Removal from office—which has never happened in U.S. history—would require support from the Senate. But the House can, in fact, pursue and successfully impeach Trump. That would be a historic victory. Impeachment inquiries such as the hearings that ultimately led to Nixon's resignation, can impact public opinion. And if the Republican-run Senate fails to convict him, then they will be on record supporting the kinds of abuses made public during an impeachment inquiry.
Isn’t Mike Pence as great or a bigger threat?
We will take this question on three levels:
First, the primary question isn't whether Pence is better or worse than Trump; it's whether Trump has committed impeachable offenses. He has, and he should therefore be impeached.
Second, there’s no doubt that Pence would be a terrible president, but Trump is one too -- and there’s no evidence that Pence would be worse than Trump, who’s fully embraced Pence’s bigoted social conservative agenda.
Third, we believe that the impeachment of Trump would either implicate Pence or compromise his ability to effectively drive his agenda. But were we to see a President Pence, MoveOn would stand firmly with those most likely to be subjected to his attacks until he leaves office.
Bottom line: We believe impeaching Trump—even if it were to lead to Pence’s elevation—is the best available option.
I'm part of a local organization that already supports impeachment. How can I get involved?
Create a local event to get your group involved in the June 15 day of action! Then download the By the People Impeachment Guide. After June 15, By the People will be in touch with further plans!
Why do you support impeachment when it may stall in the Senate?
It's true that Trump could not be removed from office without two-thirds support in the Senate, which would require bipartisan support. But there are several reasons to pursue impeachment nevertheless. First, the public reckoning Trump would face in House impeachment hearings would be a strong antiseptic to his toxic politics. We also believe that the political realities can shift. For example, Nixon resigned only when he thought his party would vote against him in an impeachment vote. Finally, there is a principle of accountability we need to maintain regardless of the political posturing of the Senate.
Trump is the epitome of the threat to our democracy envisioned by the Founding Fathers when they invented impeachment as a remedy for a law-breaking, power-abusing tyrant. It’s our moral and democratic responsibility to maintain the integrity of this constitutional tool.
Donald Trump has the lowest approval rating of his presidency now, after the Mueller report came out. There’s no better time to push for impeachment.
Some Republicans are saying, "The Mueller report exonerates Trump. It found "no collusion." Isn't the case closed?"
The Mueller report states explicitly that it “does not exonerate the president.” Quite the opposite: It can be read as an impeachment referral. Here’s an article that spells out all of the ways in which the report implicates Trump in a manner that requires accountability.
“Collusion” isn’t a legal term; it’s one Trump’s been using, but it wasn’t the focus of the special counsel investigation. Mueller investigated other questions, including whether the president obstructed justice. The fact that Attorney General Barr has used the term "no collusion" despite its lack of legal underpinning suggests that he is really running a PR campaign to protect Trump, not to find potential wrongdoing.
Collusion is not in the criminal statute. But the report does document repeated contacts between agents of the Russian government and the highest echelons of the Trump campaign. What’s more, it details serious efforts by Trump to obstruct justice.
Get over it already! We've spent too much time already on "RussiaGate."
We ignore Donald Trump’s heinous actions at our own peril.
The reason the media has focused so much on this crisis is that there’s a critically important story to tell! Never before has a presidential campaign been caught seeking help from a foreign government to win the election. And the only other president in history who has so blatantly obstructed an investigation into his wrongdoing, Richard Nixon, resigned from office before he could be impeached.
I worry that people don’t care about impeachment. You should be focusing your efforts on things that are actually impacting people’s lives, such as the economy and health care, and not wasting your time with a lost cause that’s remote from most people’s lives.
It's a false choice between pursuing impeachment and pursuing an agenda that improves people's lives.
MoveOn has been actively campaigning for things such as universal health care and against things like the wall for years, and we will continue to do so. This doesn’t mean we’re not able to simultaneously campaign for impeachment.
Large sections of the American public think Trump has attempted to obstruct the investigations and put himself above the law. That matters. The question many people have is whether we can win. We believe that the House investigation and hearing process have the potential to convince even more Americans of just how corrupt and criminal this administration is.