Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village) released the following statement calling for the immediate opening of an impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump:

“Over the past two years, like many Americans, I have followed with dismay, disgust, and heartache, as President Trump has torn apart so much that we hold dear.

“His vitriolic, divisive rhetoric and actions – denigrating women, people of color, immigrants, people of faith, the LGBTQ community, people with disabilities, and many others – have done real and long-lasting damage to our nation. His Executive Actions and policies have repeatedly sought to take our nation backwards, and a record number of individuals he has chosen to serve in his Administration have been incompetent, corrupt, or outright violated our laws.

“We, clearly, deserve more from our President. Clearly, the American people deserve a President who unequivocally rejects bigotry and hate. Clearly, the American people deserve a President who carefully and thoughtfully considers the ramifications of their words and actions both domestically and internationally – especially when those words and actions harm our national security and diminish our leadership position in the world. Clearly, the American people deserve a President who is committed to quality, affordable healthcare, to protecting the environment from the ravages of climate change, to fighting for a quality public education system, an expanding middle class, and after a lifetime of hard work, security in retirement. In short, the American people deserve a President who stands up for them and their interests, not one whose actions and policies are for personal benefit.

“For many of these reasons, I’ve heard from countless constituents who have urged me to support impeaching the President. But, no matter how much one dislikes and abhors President Trump’s policies and actions, the Constitution, rightfully, gives extreme deference to elections where the will of the people is best expressed.

“But the Constitution also holds the rule of law supreme and puts no one above the law. In cases where the President’s actions violate the law, and are so egregious that the nation cannot wait, it empowers and obligates the House of Representatives to begin an impeachment inquiry to determine whether the President should be removed from office.

“Our Founding Fathers entrusted the U.S. House of Representatives with the sole power to impeach, because House members are the most directly elected representatives of the people. The power to impeach is a fundamental foundation of our democracy, because it is our only avenue to assert the rule of law upon the President.

“I took an oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution, and I take that oath very seriously.

“The Mueller report lays out multiple instances of obstruction of justice, and it lays out Donald Trump’s support for – and invitation to – a foreign government to break our laws, to commit crimes, to interfere with the 2016 elections, and to undermine our democracy. President Trump has continued to flagrantly cast aside the rule of law, he has obstructed justice, and he has expressed a strong desire to continue this behavior in the future, even stating that he intends to accept foreign interference in our democratic elections again.

“Our democracy depends on the rule of law for its very existence, and the President of the United States must be a strident defender of the rule of law. Free and fair elections are also essential to the strength of our democracy, and the President of the United States must be a strident defender of free and fair elections. Further, democratic rule of nations around the world is also essential to our own national security, and the President of the United States must be a strident defender of democracy itself, not someone who embraces murderous thugs who oppress their people and threaten our democratic allies.

“I believe the Mueller report, on its own, shows egregious encouragement for a foreign adversary to undermine our democracy, and irrefutable evidence of obstruction of justice.

“Further, President Trump’s repeated statements that he invites future illegal, foreign interference in our elections, his repeated current attempts to obstruct Congress’ oversight authority, and his clear intent to continue to obstruct justice and the will of Congress, create an urgency of action.

“I am, therefore, calling for the immediate opening of an impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump.

“An impeachment inquiry should consider all the facts surrounding the actions of Mr. Trump, and the American people should be presented with all the facts. This is a pivotal moment in our nation’s history, and I believe President Trump presents an existential threat to our democracy. Congress was given the obligation to consider impeachment, when necessary, as a foundational cornerstone of this great democratic experiment, and I believe we cannot wait another day before we exercise our duty and uphold our oath.”

For a video of the statement, click here.