October 10, 2019

Torres Small backs impeachment inquiry

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Xochitl Torres Small

After becoming one of the final Democratic holdouts, U.S. Rep. Xochitl Torres Small now supports the ongoing impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump happening in the House, citing Trump’s efforts to block the investigation.

However, she said she still has “not reached judgment on the president’s actions, nor on the appropriate response.”

The first-term congresswoman announced the news in an opinion piece in the Las Cruces Sun News on Thursday.

Previously, Torres Small had held the middle ground, saying she supported an investigation into the allegations against Trump related to Ukraine, but not calling it a formal impeachment inquiry.

However, the Trump administration’s actions changed that.

“Earlier this week, the president and his administration made it clear to New Mexicans that they are not committed to finding the truth,” Torres Small wrote. “They took unprecedented steps to prevent the facts from coming forward. The White House and the State Department stopped a key witness from testifying before Congress and the White House issued a letter refusing to cooperate at all with the investigation. “

Impeachment, a rarity, has included charges of obstruction before. The House impeached President Bill Clinton in 1998 on two articles, one of which included obstruction of justice. Articles of impeachment approved by the House Judiciary Committee in 1972 included obstruction of justice charges against President Richard Nixon.

The Senate failed to convict Clinton, and he remained in office. Nixon resigned before facing an impeachment vote from the full U.S. House.

Torres Small represents the most conservative district in the state, and holds the seat after a narrow win in the 2018 Democratic wave. 

The district will be a top-tier target for Republicans in 2020 as they seek to retake control of the U.S. House.