But the Vermont senator cautioned that the Senate is unlikely to convict President Donald Trump and oust him from office.
Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is now expressing support for opening an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.
“I believe the (House) Judiciary Committee should begin impeachment inquiries,” Sanders saidat a campaign rally in Henderson, Nevada, on Thursday. “That is inquiries, not impeachment, to determine whether or not Trump has committed impeachable offenses.”
Sanders, one of more than 20 candidates vying for the Democratic presidential nomination, previously had stopped short of calling for impeachment proceedings to begin. His position had been that he feared opening impeachment proceedings could help re-elect Trump to a second term.
During his remarks on Thursday, which went mostly unnoticed by national media, Sanders again made the case that impeachment could backfire because of lack of support in the Senate ― among Democrats as well as Republicans ― for convicting Trump on impeachment charges and thereby removing him from office.
“It may well be that Donald Trump wants to be impeached because he knows that in the Senate … there are 47 Democrats and not all of them today would impeach Trump,” he said.
The Constitution requires two-thirds support from the 100-member Senate for any impeachment charge that passed the House via a majority of its 435-members.
“The challenge will be to walk down two paths simultaneously,” in dealing Trump’s conduct in office, Sanders said. “We cannot make ordinary Americans think we have forgotten that they are working longer hours for lower wages, that they can’t afford health care, that their kids can’t go to college, that climate change is a huge issue,” Sanders said.