Nashville Congressman Jim Cooper is joining calls to begin impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump.
The Democratic lawmaker issued a statement Tuesday saying that "the president's continuing misconduct" threatens the Constitution and the laws of the land. The reversal comes amid mounting pressure on Trump — centered on a recent conversation with Ukraine's leader.
Cooper's statement came hours before House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced she too now favors an impeachment inquiry.
"The President's invitation to yet another foreign power — this time Ukraine — to undermine U.S. elections requires that Congress begin the process in our Constitution to levy formal charges against him," he said.
President Trump is said to have dangled military aid before Ukraine, if it would investigate former Vice President Joe Biden. Cooper says that's inviting a foreign power to meddle in the election.
Up until now, Cooper has resisted pressure to call for impeachment, worrying that it would make Trump more popular. He points to President Bill
Clinton's rising popularity after his impeachment two decades ago.
But that stance has hurt Cooper politically. Democrats who support impeachment are considering
challenging him in the primary.
So far, about 150 lawmakers have called for impeaching President Trump, including Memphis Congressman Steve Cohen.
That's still about 70 short of the number needed in the House for impeachment articles to be referred to the Senate. The upper chamber would need a two-thirds majority to convict President Trump and remove him from office, a prospect considered slim in the Republican-controlled chamber.