House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) indicated that despite a public statement from special counsel Robert Mueller chastising President Trump this week, she remains in no hurry to impeach him.
On Thursday evening on Jimmy Kimmel Live, she said she was “done” talking about him, according to the Washington Post.
“I’m done with him, in terms of talking about him,” she said. “What we want to talk about is, let’s build the infrastructure of America and not have him stomp out of the room.”
Mueller’s conference fueled Democrat calls for Trump’s impeachment after he suggested during his press conference that only Congress could “formally accuse a sitting president of wrongdoing.”
Pelosi was vague about whether Congress would seek to impeach Trump. “We’ve been on that path for a while,” she said. “When we do get to where we’re going, we’re going to be ready.”
While impeachment is popular among Democrats, it remains unpopular for the American electorate, according to a poll published Friday by Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll.
The poll showed that a plurality of voters oppose impeaching and removing Trump, despite a strong majority of Democrat voters who favor it. Forty-three percent oppose impeachment, including 44 percent of independents. The poll was taken after Mueller’s statement.
Impeachment is also highly unlikely. Even if the House voted to begin impeachment, it would hit a wall in the Senate, where Trump enjoys a Republican majority and at least tacit support.
Pelosi acknowledged this reality, telling Kimmel that the challenge would be convincing Republicans in the Senate, whom she described as “completely in the pocket of Donald Trump.”
If impeachment fails in the Senate, Trump would feel exonerated, she said.
“He knows it’s not a good idea to be impeached, but the silver lining for him is then he believes he would be exonerated by the United States Senate, and there’s a school of thought that says if the Senate acquits you, why bring charges against him in the private sector when he’s no longer president?”
Fox News’s Senior Capitol Hill Producer Chad Pergram discussed the risks of impeachment for Democrats on the Hemmer Time radio show.
“Impeachment is all consuming,” he said. “They won’t be able to focus on much of anything else like healthcare or the economy.”
“Right now, the public temperature is not for impeachment,” he added.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA), a close Pelosi ally who is continuing to investigate whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia, also seemed lukewarm on impeachment.
“I’m not there yet,” Schiff said, according to Politico. “Although the president seems to be doing everything in his power to get me there.”
“When we go there with our case, it’s gotta be ironclad,” Pelosi said.