A House Democrat said he will force a vote to impeach President Donald Trump on Friday because his reference to Haiti, El Salvador and African nations as “shithole countries” has “sabotaged” efforts around a bipartisan immigration bill.
Last week, Trump “sabotaged what appears to have been a bipartisan effort with bigoted statements about countries on the continent of Africa,” Texas Representative Al Green told Newsweek on Thursday. The Democrat said the articles of impeachment he plans to bring to the House floor at the beginning of legislative business sometime after 9 a.m. will show “how the president’s hateful comments can impact policy.”
A bipartisan group of senators on Wednesday unveiled an immigration bill that would make the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program permanent and provide a path to citizenship to those who qualify. It would also appropriate nearly $3 billion to a border wall and technology, limit family-based migration and reallocate diversity lottery visas to other programs.
The senators building support for the immigration deal expressed hope that it can help avert a shutdown on Friday, when current government funding expires.
Green said that “if the president is negotiating with members of Congress on an immigration bill and makes a bigoted comment about countries in Africa or other places, including El Salvador, then it is perceived by others that he is attempting to put his bigoted comments into the policy.”
“Our preeminence as a world leader is at stake,” Green added.
Friday's action would mark Green’s second attempt to start proceedings to remove Trump from office. In early December, he forced a vote on impeachment through a special resolution in the House. The resolution failed, with 364 members opposing the measure, but a not insubstantial 58 Democrats cast a vote in favor.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Minority Whip Steny Hoyer last month said it was not the time to consider articles of impeachment. Instead, they called for Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into possible election collusion between the Trump campaign and Russians to play out first.
Green has not been deterred.
On the House floor Wednesday, he vowed to bring articles of impeachment “again and again and again.” A day later, Green said that “it would not surprise me” if he got fewer than 58 votes in support the second time around, but that he is pushing forward to protect democracy.
“I plan to do this as long as the president continues to make bigoted statements that are harmful to American society,” he vowed.
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