John Bonifaz discusses impeachment on “Counterpoint”

On Monday, Free Speech For People President John Bonifaz sat down with Scott Harris on “Counterpoint” to discuss the ongoing impeachment inquiry against President Trump. Following the first week of public hearings, John weighed in on the key takeaways from the current investigation, why the scope of the inquiry should be expanded, and how citizens can play a role in the movement to impeach Trump.

“What I think is most important to focus on, with respect to what’s been revealed in this current impeachment inquiry, is that the president of the United States engaged in extortion and bribery of a foreign government to assist his reelection campaign,” John said. “He used hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money in foreign assistance as a means to commit that extortion and bribery, and these are clearly high crimes for which the president should be held accountable.”

John was quick to point out that the current impeachment inquiry, while informative, fails to prosecute Trump for numerous additional impeachable offenses. This has led Free Speech For People and its allies to publish “Impeachment For The People,” which calls on Congress to expand the scope of the inquiry to include: obstruction of justice in the Russia investigation, racist abuses of power, violation of the Emoluments Clause, corruption of the electoral process, and abuse of office to target political adversaries.

“It’s a serious constitutional and strategic mistake to go forward with only a narrow set of articles that does not address the full range of Donald Trump’s abuses of power,” John told Harris. “Impeachment is about patterns, patterns of abuse of power. Even in the Watergate scandal, the focus wasn’t solely on the break-in of the Watergate and the DNC headquarters; it was about the pattern of abuse of power that Richard Nixon was engaged in. He faced three articles of impeachment, one of which was his obstruction of Congress in the impeachment inquiry and another which dealt with misusing the powers of the government to attack his political adversaries…and I think that’s what’s significant here. We have a series of abuses of power this president has committed, from the moment he took the oath of office leading to today, and we need to establish the serious precedent for the future.”

John’s top advice for people who believe Trump must be held accountable for his abuses of power is the make their voices heard. Call Members of Congress and later Senators, write letters to the editor, and mobilize the night before the House votes on articles of impeachment (see for a list of events across the country).

“We have to stay vigilant. This is a direct threat to our democracy coming out of the Oval Office in President Trump. We are at a critical threshold in American history, and the question is whether we’re all going to stand up to defend and protect our democracy at this moment in history.”

You can hear the full “Counterpoint” interview on Between the Lines.

Congressman Al Green To Force Vote on Impeachment of Donald Trump

(Houston, TX) – On Monday, July 15, 2019, Congressman Al Green released the following press release addressing his plans to bring articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump:

“The President of the United States is a racist, a bigot, a misogynist, as well as an invidious prevaricator. To say that Donald John Trump is unfit for the Office of the President of the United States is an understatement. He is unfit for public office, and if he displayed any of these behaviors in most private companies, he would be summarily terminated with haste. How long will we stand idly by as he denigrates his constituents, decimates our democracy, and damages America’s global standing?

“I was not told to speak out on the bigotry emanating from the White House. I was compelled to speak out. I believe there is a moral imperative to look racism, bigotry, misogyny, and hate in the face and rebuke it; to convey to our children that this type of behavior is unacceptable and that these beliefs are not welcome in the United States of America.

“I forced a vote on the Floor of the U.S. House of Representatives in December 2017 not to give myself a voice, but to give a voice to those who are voiceless as they are being assaulted by the policies and rhetoric of this Administration. I forced a vote on the Floor of the U.S. House of Representatives in January 2018 not to highlight myself, but to highlight the vitriolic rhetoric of ‘s***hole countries’ and ensure that these types of comments are not normalized in our discourse. I refuse to back down, sit down, or shut down in the face of this assault on the most marginalized in our communities.

“On Wednesday, May 17, 2017, I called for the impeachment of President Donald J. Trump on the Floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. I was the first to make a formal call for impeachment on the House Floor.

“On Wednesday, December 6, 2017, I introduced a resolution to impeach President Trump and forced a vote using a privileged resolution. The resolution is H. Res. 646. The vote total was 364 for tabling the resolution, 58 for proceeding with debate, 4 voted present, 6 did not vote. Eight ranking members voted for the resolution.

“On Friday, January 19, 2018, I introduced a resolution to impeach President Trump and forced a vote using a privileged resolution. The resolution is H. Res. 705. The vote total was 355 for tabling the resolution, 66 for proceeding with debate, 3 voted present, 6 did not vote. Ten ranking members voted for the resolution.

“I will again this month bring impeachment to a vote on the Floor of the U.S. House of Representatives for bigotry in policy, harmful to our society.”

WATCH NOW: “The Investigation: A Search for the Truth in Ten Acts”

The Mueller Report was both an impeachment referral and roadmap for Congress to begin an impeachment investigation of the president. In his report, former Special Counsel Robert Mueller presented evidence that Trump repeatedly obstructed justice and concluded that the Trump campaign took advantage of unlawful Russian assistance in the election.

On Monday, June 24, Law Works presented a live, streaming performance of The Investigation: A Search for the Truth in Ten Acts, a play based on the Mueller Report.

The play was written by Robert Schenkkan, a Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning screenwriter and playwright. The celebrity cast includes Annette Bening, Kevin Kline, John Lithgow, Frederick Weller, Ben McKenzie, Michael Shannon, Noah Emmerich, Justin Long, Jason Alexander, Gina Gershon, Wilson Cruz, Joel Grey, Alyssa Milano, Kyra Sedgwick, Alfre Woodard, Piper Perabo, Zachary Quinto, and Aidan Quinn, with Sigourney Weaver, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and Mark Hamill.

Watch the powerful performance below and be sure to watch until the end of the play for a message on how we must respond to the content of the Mueller Report.

“A Moral Call to Action”: Massachusetts Leaders Demand Impeachment Inquiry During National Day of Action in Northampton

State Sen. Jo Comerford and State Rep. Lindsay Sabadosa addressed more than 100 activists gathered in Northampton’s Pulaski Park for the National Day of Impeachment Action on June 15th, organized by MoveOn and By the People. Both legislators reaffirmed their support for an impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump, citing the need to protect our democracy from President Trump’s consistent assaults.

“It’s not about politics,” said State Sen. Jo Comerford. “Asking Congressman Jerry Nadler of the Judiciary Committee to open up an impeachment investigation is a moral call to action to defend our democracy. And it does not matter if you are a Republican or a Democrat, it is the right thing to do.”

State Rep. Lindsay Sabadosa added, “Now is the time to actually do what is hard. Because otherwise, what does the power actually mean? Why run, why serve if when you have the ability to do something, you don’t do it?”

The National Day of Impeachment Action on June 15th encompassed over 140 events in more than 100 cities nationwide. Tens of thousands of people called on Congress to begin an impeachment inquiry against Donald Trump, a necessity that Speaker Nancy Pelosi has repeatedly resisted. Speakers at the Northampton rally included Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts (Chair of the House Committee on Rules) and Free Speech For People President John Bonifaz.

Over 100 Cities Hold Day of Impeachment Action Against Donald Trump

On Saturday, June 15th, more than 13,000 Americans gathered at 142 events across the country, calling on Congress to begin an impeachment inquiry against President Trump. Free Speech For People was proud to partner with MoveOn and By the People for this historic event, the largest national mobilization for impeachment to date.

Free Speech for People President John Bonifaz addressed more than 100 people in Northampton’s Pulaski Park, saying, “We refuse to be silent. We refuse to walk away. We will rise to demand that members of Congress carry out their Constitutional duty and start an impeachment inquiry of this President.”

Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts, who chairs the House Committee on Rules, also addressed the crowd in Northampton: “I’ve seen enough. I’ve seen the Mueller report, this administration is not complying with requests. If we turn a blind eye to him ignoring Congress, we set a terrible precedent.”

Rep. McGovern addresses the crowd in Northampton, MA

Meanwhile in Boston, Free Speech For People’s Board Chair Ben Clements told protesters on the Common, “This is how autocracies take root. This is how democracies die…Our country cannot afford to wait. We will not sit idly by while a corrupt, lawless, racist, misogynist, homophobic, xenophobic, bigoted, unfit President tramples on our Constitution and our people.”

Sixty-seven members of Congress have now voiced public support for an impeachment inquiry to date, and thirteen have become co-sponsors of a House resolution to start such an inquiry, introduced by Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Rep. Al Green (D-TX) in March. Many were in attendance at events around the country on Saturday, including Rep. Tlaib in Detroit, Rep. Green in Houston, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) in Portland, Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) in New York City, and Rep. Madeleine Dean, Rep Mary Gay Scanlon, and Rep. Brendan Boyle in Philadelphia. A recent Reuters poll found that 45 percent of Americans support impeachment, compared to 42 percent opposed. The percentage in favor of impeachment is significantly higher than it was when Congress began an impeachment inquiry into Richard Nixon.

Free Speech For People has been a leader in the impeachment movement since January 2017, when we created the Impeach Donald Trump Now campaign with RootsAction. Following the release of our book in August 2018, The Constitution Demands It: The Case for the Impeachment of Donald Trump, we launched The Impeachment Project as a new resource for this movement. To read our grounds for impeachment, click here.

MoveOn and By the People will hold an organizing call on next steps for the impeachment movement on Tuesday, June 18th at 8:30 PM EST. To RSVP, visit Representatives Al Green, Jamie Raskin, and Rashida Tlaib will all be featured speakers on the call.

Order The Constitution Demands It Today!