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Tom Steyer, who poured $120 million into midterms, tells newly empowered Democrats to impeach Trump

Democratic billionaire Tom Steyer on Wednesday urged the newly empowered House Democrats to pursue impeachme...

Posted: Nov 7, 2018 4:33 PM
Updated: Nov 7, 2018 4:33 PM

Democratic billionaire Tom Steyer on Wednesday urged the newly empowered House Democrats to pursue impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump.

"If you look at last night and you look at the popular vote, there was a referendum on the President, and he got crushed," Steyer told CNN in a telephone interview.

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He said House Democrats must "stand up for the rule of law" and confront a "lawless" President who is a "threat to the American Constitution and the American people."

But a push to impeach Trump could put some of the new Democratic lawmakers in a tough place politically if they are focusing on impeachment rather than economic issues and health care that they campaigned on.

Steyer, who is weighing a 2020 presidential bid, made impeachment and driving youth turnout in House races, the centerpiece of his $120 million campaign to shape the midterm elections.

But his political operation suffered a defeat in Florida, where CNN has projected that Republican Ron DeSantis will become Florida governor. Steyer and his political organizations contributed heavily -- nearly $13 million -- to help elect the Democrat in that race, Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum.

And while the House has the power to impeach -- essentially, formally charge -- a sitting official, the power to remove a president resides in the Senate, where Republicans on Tuesday night expanded their hold.

Hasn't decided on White House

On Wednesday, Steyer did not rule out a White House run but said he had not made up his mind.

"We haven't even finished counting the votes," he said. "I'm going to have to sit down and try and figure out what I've always said I was going to have to figure out, which is: How can I and how can we make the most positive impact?"

CNN's national exit polls show that about 40% of midterm voters support Trump's impeachment. But that sentiment soars among Democrats: a whopping 77% of voters who identified as Democrats in Tuesday's exit polls back impeaching Trump, compared with 33% of independents and just 5% of Republicans.

Democratic leaders long have downplayed talk of impeachment, but their ascension to the House majority could unleash a wave of new congressional investigations for Trump and his administration. At the same time, special counsel Robert Mueller existing investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign is likely to escalate.

Mueller's report is "likely to put gasoline on the fire" for an energized Democratic base, said Tom Davis, a former Virginia congressman who once led the House Republican campaign arm.

"I don't know how they don't at least open an inquiry," he said of House Democrats. "They've got to go back to their districts."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 58640

Reported Deaths: 1677
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Hennepin18641828
Ramsey7233261
Dakota4188104
Anoka3515114
Stearns286420
Washington200944
Nobles17536
Olmsted168823
Scott147918
Mower10942
Rice10138
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Carver8162
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Sherburne7037
Kandiyohi6871
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Todd4222
Lyon4213
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Steele3381
Nicollet32913
Benton3153
Watonwan3010
Winona25416
Crow Wing22514
Beltrami2150
Le Sueur2101
Martin2045
Chisago1891
Goodhue1878
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Cottonwood1750
Becker1501
McLeod1480
Pipestone1479
Polk1453
Waseca1380
Douglas1360
Itasca13512
Carlton1320
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Murray1221
Isanti1160
Chippewa1011
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Fillmore610
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Swift521
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Houston410
Norman370
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Wilkin323
Hubbard300
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Wadena240
Red Lake230
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Lake200
Stevens170
Clearwater150
Traverse100
Lac qui Parle60
Kittson30
Cook20
Lake of the Woods10

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 47424

Reported Deaths: 910
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk10032206
Woodbury369151
Black Hawk308463
Linn227987
Johnson202116
Dallas184635
Buena Vista179112
Scott165514
Dubuque162331
Marshall142525
Pottawattamie128426
Story114114
Wapello87233
Muscatine84048
Webster7727
Crawford7263
Sioux6143
Cerro Gordo59617
Warren5471
Tama54529
Jasper46626
Wright4551
Plymouth4528
Louisa38014
Dickinson3774
Clinton3623
Washington29310
Boone2442
Hamilton2441
Franklin2339
Bremer2037
Clarke1953
Emmet1882
Carroll1851
Shelby1771
Clay1761
Hardin1730
Marion1620
Allamakee1544
Poweshiek1538
Des Moines1522
Jackson1481
Benton1461
Floyd1432
Mahaska13917
Guthrie1315
Cedar1281
Jones1272
Buchanan1231
Hancock1212
Butler1192
Henry1193
Pocahontas1151
Madison1142
Lyon1092
Lee1073
Cherokee1031
Clayton1023
Harrison1020
Humboldt1001
Delaware991
Taylor960
Iowa941
Monona910
Winneshiek911
Mills850
Page850
Calhoun832
Kossuth830
Sac820
Fayette810
Jefferson800
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Osceola790
Mitchell780
Winnebago770
Grundy761
Union751
Monroe697
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Appanoose473
Greene390
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