HARTFORD - The majority of Connecticutâ€™s all-Democratic congressional delegation by Tuesday afternoon had called for a House select committee to begin an impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump, citing the Republicanâ€™s efforts to pressure the Ukrainian president to investigate the family of a political rival, former Democratic Vice President Joe Biden.
U.S. Sens. Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal kicked off the announcements after resisting for months to call on the House of Representatives to take action.
â€śI am deeply sorry that our nation must begin this journey toward impeachment,â€ť Murphy said in a written statement. â€śBut circumstances have changed, and the seriousness of the moment requires all of us to speak out in order to preserve our nationâ€™s commitment to the rule of law.â€ť
Blumenthal said he reached the decision â€świth sadness, but also with anger.â€ť He said Trumpâ€™s efforts to seek â€ścorrupt assistance from a foreign leader for personal gain crosses the line.â€ť
By the afternoon, U.S. Reps. Joe Courtney, John Larson and Jahana Hayes issued statements expressing their support for an impeachment probe. A member of the House Intelligence Committee, Courtney said the Trump administrationâ€™s refusal to release a whistleblower complaint to the Congress regarding the presidentâ€™s actions concerning Ukraine â€śhas rapidly changed my thinking and the thinking of many other citizens in eastern Connecticut.â€ť Larson said he spoke to Connecticut Rep. Jim Himes, a senior member of the House Intelligence Committee who in June was the first member of the Connecticut delegation to call for an impeachment inquiry.
He said Himes â€śunderscored the gravity of the situationâ€ť and said the release of a written transcript of Trumpâ€™s phone conversation with the Ukrainian president would not change â€śthat his people have kept the whistleblower complaint from being delivered to Congress in violation of the law.â€ť
Hayes acknowledged she was â€śnot quick to support impeachmentâ€ť and wanted the process to play out. But she said the refusal to provide the whistleblower complaint led her to support the probe. She said the â€śpresidentâ€™s obstruction of Congress in carrying out our constitutional duty is concerning.â€ť
Later Tuesday afternoon, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that a formal impeachment inquiry of Trump was being launched.
U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro, the remaining member of the stateâ€™s delegation, on Monday issued a statement indicating a willingness to consider supporting an impeachment inquiry in light of Trumpâ€™s actions.