Speaker of the House and leftist icon Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has performed a very careful dance on the issue of possible impeachment for President Donald Trump. Most recently, as The Daily Wire reported earlier this week, Pelosi found herself heckled by her fellow California Democrats for being insufficiently zealous about impeachment:
Local lawmaker Pelosi ... clearly anticipated a friendly audience, and took the stage Saturday afternoon to update California's progressive activists on a handful of ongoing Congressional investigations into President Donald Trump's personal finances and pre-presidential business dealings. When she got to the part of her speech focused on Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report on potential collusion between the Trump 2016 campaign and Russian officials, though, the crowd turned on her.
Pelosi began discussing Trump's potential "obstruction of justice," a charge outlined in the Mueller report but subsequently dismissed by the Attorney General's office, and it wasn't long before members of the audience were drowning her out, yelling "Impeach! Impeach!" ...
Pelosi struggled for several minutes before launching back into her speech, looking very uncomfortable.
"Pelosi and other long-time Democrats have been the subject of progressive ire lately, after refusing to sign on to articles of impeachment, preferring instead that Democrats treat the 2020 presidential election as a referendum on Trump's actions, including potential obstruction of justice," The Daily Wire's Emily Zanotti added.
But this week, Pelosi reportedly went full Woke® in a private Capitol Hill exchange with House Judiciary Chairman Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY). Specifically, as Politico reports, Pelosi actually called not for Trump's impeachment, but for his imprisonment:
Speaker Nancy Pelosi told senior Democrats that she’d like to see President Donald Trump "in prison" as she clashed with House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler in a meeting on Tuesday night over whether to launch impeachment proceedings. ...
"I don’t want to see him impeached, I want to see him in prison," Pelosi said, according to multiple Democratic sources familiar with the meeting. Instead of impeachment, Pelosi still prefers to see Trump defeated at the ballot box and then prosecuted for his alleged crimes, according to the sources.
They said she was expressing solidarity with pro-impeachment Democrats who want to hold the president accountable while disputing the idea that it is now time to take that step.
The leaked statement amounts to an interesting political calculation for Pelosi. The speaker, it seems, is attempting to thread a needle between mollifying the restive progressive base of her party and assuaging institutional Democratic establishment forces who are concerned about the possible political ramifications at the ballot box in 2020 of such an unjustified impeachment push. Whether Pelosi will come across as less "radical" for claiming that a sitting president of the United States deserves to be imprisoned is, at best, a shaky proposition.
Political prediction market PredictIt.org currently has Trump as an overwhelming favorite to successfully complete his first term as president — and to therefore not be impeached. Republicans, after all, retain control of the U.S. Senate — where two-thirds of members are required, in any event, to successfully convict upon the House's initial impeachment.