(The update as of 5pm ET is that Nancy Pelosi has indeed announced a formal impeachment inquiry. See that here, or read on for more of the latest.) Major media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and NBC News are reporting by way of sources that Nancy Pelosi will announce a formal impeachment inquiry of the president within hours. Her statement will come after an all-caucus meeting scheduled for 4pm ET. The Post reports that the House speaker may create a "select committee" to conduct a possible impeachment, rather than having the House Judiciary panel handle it. More:
- We'll hear it straight from Pelosi's mouth around 5pm ET, but the AP reports she gave up some "hints" while appearing at the Atlantic Festival in Washington. "We have gotten to this different place, use any metaphor," she said, suggesting "crossing the Rubicon" and a "new day is dawning." "This is a very serious, in a class of its own, (the) discussion that we're having about the conduct of the president of the United States."
- Where things stand in the 235-member Democratic Caucus as of this morning, per Politico: more than two-thirds of the caucus is now in favor of impeachment, a number that includes more and more Democrats "considered vulnerable in 2020." Of the 44 who fall into that category, Politico logs more than half as supporting impeachment proceedings.
- Joe Biden might not go quite as far as Pelosi. In a speech in Delaware later Tuesday, Biden will call for impeachment if Trump fails to comply with all congressional investigations in the works, including about Ukraine, reports Politico. An unnamed Biden aide is giving the same statement to multiple outlets: Biden is "going to make the point that Trump’s latest abuses are on top of all of his prior abuses." He will "call on Trump to comply with all of Congress’ outstanding, lawful requests for information—in the Ukraine matter, and in the other investigations. And if Trump does not comply, Congress has no choice but to impeach." Biden himself is caught up in the Ukraine story, and Trump continues to insist that the issue poses more trouble for the former VP than for himself.
- Meanwhile, the whistleblower who lodged the complaint that led to Trump's call with the leader of Ukraine coming to light is actively looking to speak to Congress. This from House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff, who said the whistleblower's counsel reached out to say "their client would like to speak to our committee and has requested guidance from the Acting DNI [Joseph Maguire] as to how to do so," per the AP. Schiff added that the committee looks forward to the testimony "as soon as this week." Maguire previously determined that the whistleblower's complaint could not be shared with Congress.
(The Ukraine controversy has led to a "seismic change in mood"
among Democrats on the issue.)