Everything you need to understand the impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump
The United States House of Representatives finally started an impeachment inquiry into President Trump, but the evidence of criminal behavior by Trump and his associates has been clear for a long time. Let’s take a look at what an impeachment inquiry could look like and what evidence there is against Trump.
Common Cause released an in-depth report in July 2019 laying out the case for an impeachment inquiry into President Trump and how an inquiry would work in Congress. You can read that report here: The Case for an Impeachment Inquiry of President Trump.
We delivered this report to every member of Congress to urge the House start an impeachment inquiry, and you can read our letter to Congress that accompanied the report here. At the same time, Common Cause launched a new website – impeachmentinquiry.org – to help Americans contact their member of Congress and ask them to support an impeachment investigation.
The evidence of Trump’s impeachable conduct is overwhelming. The Mueller report on Russian interference in the 2016 election and the whistleblower complaint on Trump soliciting campaign help from Ukraine both offer clear examples of impeachable offenses, including obstruction of justice and abuse of power. Those offenses, of course, are in addition to the fact that Trump is likely violating the Constitution’s emoluments clause by retaining ownership of businesses and profiting off the presidency, Trump’s dereliction of duty when it comes to protecting our elections from foreign interference, and Trump’s ongoing mismanagement of the executive branch. The other major pieces of impeachment evidence against Trump are his campaign finance violations, which Common Cause has been documenting since he took office.
Common Cause’s Vice President for Policy & Litigation Paul S. Ryan has written a series of op-eds in Just Security detailing Trump’s campaign finance violations, including his solicitation of election help from the Ukraine as described in a recent whistleblower complaint, the Mueller report and Russian interference in the 2016 election, and the hush money payments to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal:
- The Iceberg’s Tip: Ukraine Phone Call and the Months-Long Conspiracy to Violate Federal Campaign Finance Laws (September 27, 2019)
- The “Quid” is a Crime: No Need to Prove “Pro Quo” in Ukrainegate (September 23, 2019)
- Expert Summaries of Mueller Report: Charging Decisions: Accepting Information from Foreign Officials (August 20, 2019)
- After Publishing Strong Evidence of Trump’s Campaign Finance Crimes, DOJ Closes Case Without Explanation (July 19, 2019)
- Roger Stone Indictment Implicates Trump Campaign in Election Law Violations (January 25, 2019)
- Trump Campaign in Legal Jeopardy Over Manafort’s Sharing Data with Russian Agent (January 10, 2019)
- All Evidence Points to Campaign Finance Crimes By President Trump (December 13, 2018)
- The Already-Strong Campaign Finance Case Against Donald Trump Just Got Stronger—Criminal offenses included (November 9, 2018)
- The Campaign Finance Case Against Donald Trump is a Strong One: Just Ask John Edwards’ Prosecutors (August 23, 2018)
- The Smoking Gun for Donald Trump Jr. and the Trump Campaign Committee (July 13, 2017)
Throughout Trump’s presidency, Common Cause has filed seven complaints with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and Department of Justice alleging Donald Trump, his campaign, and several members of his inner circle violated numerous campaign finance laws:
- On Trump and Rudy Giuliani illegally soliciting a campaign contribution from the government of Ukraine (filed September 2019) — view a fact sheet on this complaint here.
- On Trump’s illegal public endorsement of America First Action as his campaign’s “approved” outside group (filed May 2019)
- On illegal coordination between the Trump campaign, Republican National Committee, and outside groups (filed March 2018)
- On the unreported hush payments to a doorman at a Trump property (filed April 2018)
- On the hush money payments to Karen McDougal during the 2016 election (filed February 2018)
- On the hush money payments to Stormy Daniels during the 2016 election (filed January 2018)
- On the infamous “Trump Tower meeting” where Donald Trump Jr. illegally solicited a campaign contribution from a foreign national (filed July 2017 and updated in April 2019)
With the Department of Justice being run by Attorney General Bill Barr, a Trump loyalist who has improperly intervened in multiple cases to protect the president, and the FEC lacking a quorum to do anything, the House’s impeachment inquiry is the only realistic route for the American people to get the full truth and accountability. Now we must make sure that impeachment investigation is done expeditiously and transparently with open hearings.