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Democrats mum on big financial backer’s demands to impeach Trump

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    Tom Steyer, a billionaire environmentalist, at the NextGen Climate Action office in San Francisco, Feb. 13, 2014. Steyer, one of the Democratic Party’s most prominent financial backers, is demanding that lawmakers and candidates on the left support removing President Donald Trump from office, putting pressure on Democrats to make Trump’s ouster a defining issue in the 2018 midterm elections.
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    U.S. Rep. John Faso, R-19, said Tom Steyer’s demand that Democrats pledge to impeach President Donald Trump raises ethical questions.
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    Daniel Zuckerman/Columbia-Greene Media Brian Flynn, who is running for the Democratic candidacy for the 19th Congressional seat in 2018, speaks on stage with Dave Clegg and Steven Brisee. Flynn said Tom Steyer’s demands of Democrats to pledge to impeach Trump are inappropriate and premature without concrete evidence of the president committing any impeachable offenses.
October 13, 2017 - 12:31 am

Top Democrats remain mum after one of the party’s top financial backers announced he is demanding current Democratic legislators and future candidates to pledge to impeach President Donald Trump.

The New York Times reported Wednesday that Thomas Steyer, one of the Democratic Party’s most generous contributors, is demanding Democratic lawmakers and candidates pledge to impeach Trump, a far-fetched request at this point.

According to the Federal Election Commission, Steyer has already contributed more than $5.8 million to the next mid-term election cycle including contributions to U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif.

Steyer, who may be considering a future run for the Senate against Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., is focusing his million-dollar free speech on national campaign committees including the DCCC, $169,400 in 2015 through 2016, and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, $32,400 in 2015 through 2016, and campaigns on the West Coast and in highly contested states.

The DCCC refused to comment after receiving four requests.

U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., who did not receive direct contributions from Steyer in 2016, did not respond to three requests for comment.

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., who did not receive direct contributions from Steyer in 2016, did not respond to three requests for comment.

The only Democrat saying anything was U.S. Rep. Al Green, D-Texas, who presented articles of impeachment on the House floor Thursday.

“I’ve never taken a donation from anyone in exchange for a pledge to vote a certain way on a particular issue. To do so raises serious ethical issues in my opinion,” said U.S. Rep. John Faso, R-19.

Steyer’s demands seem outlandish at a time when Republicans run the show in both houses and mid-term elections are still more than a year away, especially since it is not even clear if Trump has committed any act in office that could be considered an impeachable offense.

Steyer defended his demands citing the possible nature of Trump’s relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin, accusations the president is using his powers to further his own economic self-interest and his hawkishness for war.

“While I certainly respect Tom Steyer and the work he’s done to protect our environment, I’m not going to take positions based on what California political donors are calling for. I’m going to do what’s right for the people of New York,” said Brian Flynn, of Hunter, who is seeking the Democratic nomination to challenge Faso for the 19th Congressional seat in 2018. “It’s about voters, not donors. That being said, Donald Trump is terrible for New York families in almost every way imaginable and he may very well have broken laws, so I’m looking forward to the findings of the various ongoing investigations.”

Little news has come out recently about the Senate Intelligence Committee or Special Counsel Robert Mueller III’s investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and alleged obstruction of the FBI’s original investigation on the part of Trump, since Mueller subpoenaed Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort.

“If crimes were committed, of course he should be impeached, but I’d like to do something Donald Trump never does – actually wait for all the facts,” Flynn said.