'The time has come': House Democrats file articles of impeachment against Trump

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U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump hugs a U.S. flag as he takes the stage for a campaign town hall meeting in Derry, New Hampshire August 19, 2015. Reuters/Brian Snyder

House Democrats have introduced articles of impeachment against US President Donald Trump on Wednesday. These include two emoluments clause violations, undermining the independence of the federal judiciary, undermining the freedom of the press and the POTUS’ verdict to fire former FBI Director James Comey.

These five articles of impeachment were introduced by Steve Cohen, the ranking member on the House judiciary committee's Constitution subcommittee. "The time has come to make clear to the American people and to this President that his train of injuries to our Constitution must be brought to an end through impeachment," he said.

According to Cohen, they believe that Trump has violated the Constitution. In August, he intended to introduce impeachment articles against the president over his response to a fatal rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Trump’s comments insisting that white supremacists, neo-Nazis and other hate groups did not deserve 100 percent of the blame for the violence, which led to the death of 32-year-old Heather Heyer, have drawn criticism.

But Cohen recognised the limitations of his proposal. He said he does not expect the House judiciary committee to take up hearings. Speaking to members of the press, he would likely be facilitating briefings in lieu of hearings.

Luis Gutierrez, one of the bill's co-sponsors, pointed at several reasons he thinks the president must be investigated, “but not all those reasons rise to the level of impeaching a sitting president.” He clarified, however, that the impeachment case does not involve what he did before running for president.

The White House also responded through a statement, with secretary Sarah Sanders saying the time spent calling for Trump's impeachment "would be better spent focusing on tax relief for American families and businesses.” She added that it is disappointing that “extremists in Congress” still refuse to accept Trump’s win during the 2016 presidential elections.

For Republican National Committee spokesman Michael Ahrens, the effort to impeach Trump is radical. "House Democrats lack a positive message and are completely unwilling to work across the aisle, so instead they've decided to support a baseless radical effort that the vast majority of Americans disagree with," he said, according to CNN.

This is not the first attempt to impeach the US commander-in-chief. Earlier this month, Rep Pramila Jayapal, D-Washington argued that he has committed "significant constitutional impeachable violations” and maintained that Democrats needed to act.