A number of Democrat congressmen have launched a no-confidence motion against Donald Trump, a move with no practical effect but a show of discontent with the president.
Two dozen congressional Democrats unveiled the resolution on Wednesday to send Trump a message of frustration over how the millionaire-cum-president is running the government.
Representative Steve Cohen explained that the motion questions Trump’s fitness to serve as the commander in chief. “This is an attempt at a political intervention,” he said.
Congress can only remove a president through impeachment; therefore a no-confidence motion would be non-binding.
(L-R) Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) and Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ) hold a news conference to talk about their introduction of a no-confidence motion against President Donald Trump, on July 19, 2017.
Cohen added that the resolution details “misdeeds and actions that give people lack of confidence in him and the direction he is taking our country.”
Refusing to release his taxes, launching verbal attacks on women and the press, pulling the United States
out of the Paris climate pact, and enfeebling Washington’s traditional alliances are only but few examples of what prompted Democrats to file the symbolic motion.
The resolution accuses Trump of accepting payments from foreign powers, including from officials staying at his hotels, and firing the FBI director because of the ongoing investigation into controversial links with Russia.
It also urged Trump to release his tax returns; “unequivocally acknowledge” that Russia interfered in the 2016 election; and refrain from using Twitter inappropriately.
“We have a president who actively undermines the very principles of our government, and a Republican Congress that makes excuses for him as though his behavior were normal,” said congresswoman and co-sponsor Judy Chu. “It is not normal. Trump’s behavior is cruel, unethical and it is driving people’s faith in government to dangerously low levels.”
Such resolutions of congressional censure are very rare in the United States
. In 2007, the Senate considered a no-confidence motion against Bush-era attorney general Alberto Gonzalez, but it failed to advance.
Earlier in the month, Democrat Congressman Brad Sherman formally introduced an the first article of impeachment against Trump, accusing the president of obstructing justice during a federal investigation of Russia’s role in 2016 election.
The impeachment bid comes as the Senate Judiciary Committee held hearings on Christopher Wary to replace Comey as FBI director, about a day after reports surfaced that the president’s son, Donald Trump Jr., met with a Russian lawyer during the campaign in the belief that she has damaging information about White House rival Hillary Clinton.
The US Constitution says a president can be impeached for committing “high crimes and misdemeanors,” but a majority vote in the House, currently controlled by Republicans, is required to impeach a president. Fifty percent of the House of Representatives and two-thirds of the Senate must agree to remove a president from office.