(Bloomberg) -- House Democrats’ impeachment efforts against President Donald Trump are “an embarrassment” that will become a 2020 campaign problem for party members seeking re-election in swing districts, the top House Republican said Friday.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said he has seen polling that shows Democratic voters know more about the House investigations of Trump “than they can name one thing this Democrat majority of Congress has accomplished.”
“I think that is a sign that Democrats in Congress have a real problem,” particularly for 31 party members who represent House districts that Trump won in 2016, McCarthy told reporters in Baltimore, where House Republicans are holding a policy retreat.
“I think it is wrong for them to even talk about it,” he said. McCarthy said it’s “an embarrassment” that Democratic leaders are unable to agree among themselves on what to call the maneuvering by the House Judiciary Committee and other panels.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi continues to stop short of saying Democrats are in the midst of any formal impeachment inquiry. But Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler has gone in an opposite direction -- repeatedly declaring that his committee is conducting an inquiry, and even that a decision on articles of impeachment against Trump could come by the end of the year.
McCarthy said the impeachment actions are overshadowing any legislative action by the House Democratic majority. He said that in 2020, Republican challengers to those 31 Democrats won’t need to bring up impeachment as an issue because voters in the districts will do it.
House Democrats say they have passed dozens of bills addressing their agenda, including to raise the minimum wage and curb gun violence, and it is Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell who has acted as a self-described “grim reaper” to bottle up the bills there.
--With assistance from Erik Wasson.
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