It may seem like California billionaire Tom Steyer’s “Need to Impeach” campaign is farfetched.
But, in fact, he has drawn more than 5 million people to sign a petition to oust President Trump from office, a move that, maybe surprisingly, has rattled both Republicans and Democrats.
“I believe this year we’re in a struggle...for the soul of America,” Steyer told Cheddar Monday.
The hedge fund manager launched “Need to Impeach” in October, funding the cause out of his own pocket.
It revolves around what he calls Trump’s eight “impeachable offenses,” including obstruction of justice for firing former FBI Director James Comey and advocating violence for siding with neo-Nazis at the Charlottesville, Va., protests last year.
“I think that this is a lawless president,” said Steyer. “He’s somebody who from the very beginning had no respect for the rule of law.
“He’s a dangerous president, in the sense that he put our democracy at risk.”
Much of Steyer’s campaigning has been geared towards voters aged 35 years or younger. He hopes the strategy will ramp up pressure on lawmakers going into the November midterm elections to talk about the issue.
“People under 35 are the largest age cohort in American history. They vote at approximately half the rate of other citizens...and our attitude is if they don’t participate in our democracy, we don’t have a successful democracy.”
He points to the success of the student survivors of the Parkland, Fla., shooting as an example of younger voters determining the political conversation.
But impeaching Trump would be a massive undertaking, requiring both bipartisan support in Congress and a strong legal case.
There has never been an instance in U.S. history where an impeached president was removed from office. Only President Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton have ever been impeached. President Nixon resigned before he could be impeached and voted out of office by the Senate.
Steyer’s determination to pour his time and money into this campaign has given rise to questions of whether he himself will be running for President in 2020.
But Steyer says he isn’t thinking that far ahead.
“I’m not looking past November 6th, 2018, because I don’t know what’s going to happen [then].”
For the full interview, click here.