(Bloomberg) -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ruled out the possibility of censuring President Donald Trump as an alternative to impeachment, saying that it would be a half-way measure and little more than “a way out.”
“Censure is nice but it is not commensurate with the violations of the Constitution, should we decide that is the way to go,” Pelosi told reporters Wednesday.
The Democratic leader has resisted pleas from some in the House Democratic caucus to open impeachment proceedings against Trump, arguing that the Republican-controlled Senate would never remove him from office and the move would only backfire politically. Now, she’s also rejecting a censure resolution that has been floated as an alternative.
“If the goods are there, we must impeach,” Pelosi said at a breakfast hosted by the Christian Science Monitor.
‘Era of Duels’
House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, whose panel would initiate impeachment proceedings, has also said he’s skeptical about censure.
“It was done once in American history, when Andrew Jackson was censured” in 1834, Nadler told CNBC in an interview last month. “But that was in the era of duels. When someone insulted you, you took them to a duel. Today, I’m not sure anybody would care about a censure resolution. They’d laugh it off.”
Pelosi said the next step is for House Democrats to complete their review of a less-redacted version of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russian election interference and whether Trump sought to obstruct the investigation. After that, she said, they will determine next steps for their investigations of the president.
She insisted impeachment remains a possibility, but only in the longer term.
“Every day we see more,” she said. “Why would we stop with a less-strong case?”
(Adds Nadler’s comments in sixth paragraph.)
--With assistance from Billy House.
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