Nancy Pelosi runs her caucus with an iron first.
Democrats almost never oppose the direction she chooses for the party.
But in this big fight, Nancy Pelosi got betrayed by the one person she never expected.
The impeachment fight is testing Nancy Pelosi’s ability to keep her caucus in line.
She knows impeachment is politically unpopular.
But rank-and-file Democrats hate Donald Trump and want to remove him from office.
In the past, Pelosi could count on the unanimous support of her leadership team to back her decisions.
But not in this case.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler is siding with the pro-impeachment Democrats and pressuring Pelosi to allow his committee to open an impeachment inquiry.
Pelosi and Nadler, two veterans of the impeachment drama surrounding President Bill Clinton 20 years ago, appear to be drawing opposite lessons from that experience. And the divide between the two lawmakers is illustrative of what all Democrats are grappling with as they respond to Trump’s efforts to stonewall congressional investigations into his personal conduct, finances and policy moves.
“I think they are articulating the different impulses within the caucus, and also within each of us,” Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) said of Pelosi and Nadler. “It’s not entirely clear what to do.”
“Put yourself in the position of somebody in the House of Representatives today,” added Raskin, a Judiciary Committee member who wants to launch an impeachment inquiry. “There are a million factors to deal with. And we’re dealing with the most lawless, corrupt presidency of our lifetime. So what is the right time to respond? It’s not entirely clear.”
Nadler’s defection is the highest profile to the pro-impeachment side.
And it is more evidence that the Democrats attempting to impeach President Trump is inevitable.
We will keep you up-to-date on any new developments in this ongoing story.