- Leah Millis/Reuters
- President Donald Trump referred to impeachment as the “I-word” in an impromptu press conference on Wednesday in which he blasted Democratic leaders.
- This came after House Democrats discussed the prospect of impeaching Trump in a caucus meeting earlier in the day, after which House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the president is engaged in a “cover-up.”
- The impeachment discussion and Pelosi’s remarks led Trump to more or less scrap a meeting with Democratic leaders on infrastructure.
- “This meeting was set up a number of days ago,” Trump said in the Rose Garden. “All of a sudden, I hear last night they’re going to have a meeting right before this meeting to talk about the ‘I-word.’ The ‘I-word.’ Can you imagine?”
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President Donald Trump on Wednesday expressed disgust that Democrats discussed impeachment, which he referred to as the “I-word,” during a caucus meeting earlier in the day.
During a press conference in the Rose Garden that followed a meeting meant to focus on infrastructure with Democratic leaders, the president said, “This meeting was set up a number of days ago. All of a sudden, I hear last night they’re going to have a meeting right before this meeting to talk about the ‘I-word.’ The ‘I-word.’ Can you imagine?”
Trump refers to impeachment as "the big I-word" pic.twitter.com/fu7j04JkgT
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) May 22, 2019
Trump said he’d scrapped the infrastructure meeting because of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s assertion on Wednesday morning that the president is engaged in a “cover-up.”
Pelosi was seemingly referencing the Trump administration’s efforts to stonewall House investigations into the president and its refusal to comply with subpoenas.
The House speaker has faced pressure to move toward impeachment from fellow Democrats but has expressed a reluctance to do so because of the political consequences, including backlash from voters in the 2020 election.
But after Trump’s last-minute press conference, Pelosi took her biggest step yet toward embracing impeachment.
“In plain sight, this president is obstructing justice and is engaged in a cover-up,” Pelosi said at the Center for American Progress’ annual IDEAS Conference. “And that could be an impeachable offense.”
The special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the probe he spearheaded into Russian election interference outlined 11 possible instances of obstruction by Trump, which the House Judiciary Committee is continuing to investigate.