Democratic socialist and far-left figurehead Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) says progressives' frustration with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is "quite real" and that there is "very real animus" over the leader's reluctance to impeach President Donald Trump.
What are the details?
Ocasio-Cortez appeared on "This Week with George Stephanopoulos" Sunday, where fill-in host and ABC News Chief White House correspondent Jon Karl asked the freshman congresswoman for her views on the current debate over impeachment.
Karl asked, "So how real is that progressive frustration that Speaker Pelosi has said, at least so far — and she seems to be really holding the line — that she's not ready to do that?"
"I think it's quite real," the 29-year-old freshman congresswoman replied. "I believe that there is a very real animus and desire to make sure that we are, that — that we are holding this president to account."
Pelosi supports the ongoing committee investigations into the Trump administration by House Democrats but has repeatedly cautioned against jumping into impeachment proceedings prior to completing the fact-finding missions. The Democratic leader has said she views impeachment as "one of the most divisive forces, paths that we could go in our country."
Following the release of the Robert Mueller report, however, Pelosi has been grappling with a divided caucus. Progressives have ramped up pressure in pursuing impeachment against President Trump, while moderates in contested districts have expressed fear of losing their seats over the appearance of a political witch hunt led by Democrats.
Ocasio-Cortez said the House has a job to do and that any possible political fallout from impeaching the president shouldn't be factored into the decision. Despite Karl noting that impeachment proceedings against President Trump would go nowhere in the Republican-led Senate and would likely result in a political victory for the president, Ocasio-Cortez said those considerations would mean "politicizing" and "tainting" the process.
Karl went on to ask the congresswoman what she thought about the calls to prosecute Trump after he leaves office, as Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris (Calif.) has suggested.
"I just don't see the relevancy in calling for prosecution after he leaves office," Ocasio-Cortez replied. "We have the ability to actually, to actually kind of play out our responsibilities now. We have power now, and to bump it to when we don't have power — I don't think that makes a whole lot of sense in terms of speaking about it."
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