Rep. Maxine Waters (D., Calif.) again defied her party leadership and called for impeaching President Donald Trump on Sunday.
MSNBC host Joy Reid asked about Trump’s latest comments at a rally criticizing Waters' impeachment stance, and the congresswoman embraced her status as one of the president’s most strident critics.
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"Well, first of all, he's absolutely correct that I am encouraging impeachment, but he's incorrect when he says and implies that at the rallies people are saying he's done nothing wrong," Waters said.
She went on to say her evidence that people do think Trump is guilty is the fact her supporters "go nuts" for talk of impeachment.
"That's not what they're saying back to me when I say impeach him," Waters said. "I say ‘impeach 45’ and they go nuts and they agree, and 70 percent of Democrats in a recent poll said he should be impeached."
Reid promoted the referenced NPR/PBS News Hour/Marist poll showing 70 percent of Democrats would vote for a candidate seeking to impeach Trump, and she pointed out House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) has dismissed that strategy. Pelosi said attempting impeachment would be a political "gift" to Republicans in the 2018 elections, but Waters disagreed.
"Well, I respect that, and Nancy Pelosi has said all along that she really wanted everything geared towards talking about what we are doing and how we are working for the people and, you know, about our public policy," Waters said. "I respect that, but, however, I'm with the 70 percent. I want him impeached."
"I think this is the most outrageous human being that could ever represent our country and of course when you take a look at the lies that he has told," Waters said, arguing that Trump has lied about his connections to Russian President Vladimir Putin and oligarchs in that country.
"I think we know enough about that, they hacked into the DNC," Waters said. "He certainly can be accused of collusion and I think it's going to be proven, so it’s a combination of collusion with Russia and obstruction of justice that I believe will lead to this impeachment."
Earlier on Sunday, Democratic Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (N.Y.) dismissed Trump’s remarks about impeachment, arguing Democrats did not actually support it. Jeffries argued on CNN that Trump was only talking about impeachment because he was "desperate" to inflame his supporters.