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Beyer Calls for Impeachment Inquiry Against Trump; Will Others Join Him?

AP Photo / Alex Brandon

Democrats in Virginia are divided about whether to impeach President Trump.

Congressman Don Beyer is a Democrat from Alexandria — and the first member of the Virginia delegation to call for an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

“If we don’t seriously consider impeachment for this president, when would we ever? This president has flouted the law more than any president in history," he says. "If we don’t move forward with articles or at least an impeachment inquiry on Donald Trump we should just take impeachment out of the Constitution because we’ll never use it.”

None of the other members of the Virginia delegation have called for impeachment, at least not yet.

Quentin Kidd at Christopher Newport University suspects others may follow Beyer, although he adds the strategy is a gamble.

“It would be a real gamble on the Democrats’ part in the House if they were to move toward impeachment," explains Kidd. "I think it’s less a gamble to call for it, and in some ways it might be really smart to call for it if you know it isn’t going to happen because the speaker’s not going to let it happen.”

Democrats against impeachment say it would be handing the president everything he wants — he gets to play the victim card. And then after the Senate fails to turn him out of office he can say he’s been acquitted.

Democrats in favor of the inquiry say the House impeachment managers would be able to use subpoena power to gain access to documents like Trump’s tax returns.

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.

Michael Pope is an author and journalist who lives in Old Town Alexandria.