Donald Trump has been weighing in behind the scenes in support of the House GOP push to impeach President Joe Biden, including talking with a member of leadership in the lead up to Tuesday’s announcement authorizing a formal impeachment inquiry.
The former president has been speaking weekly with House GOP Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, who was the first member of Republican leadership to come out in support of impeachment. The two spoke Tuesday, the same day House Speaker Kevin McCarthy announced Republicans would be pursuing the inquiry, according to two people familiar with the conversation.
Stefanik has been a longtime Trump ally. She endorsed his comeback presidential bid before he made his official announcement and has been mentioned as a potential Trump VP pick should he win the GOP nomination.
On Sunday night, Trump had dinner at his golf club in Bedminster, N.J., with Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), an ally of Trump and McCarthy. At the gathering, the topic of impeachment was discussed, according to a person familiar with the conversation who spoke on condition of anonymity.
A Trump spokesperson did not comment. The former president has not been shy about his belief that Biden should be impeached. Late last month he wrote on Truth Social: “Either IMPEACH the BUM, or fade into OBLIVION. THEY DID IT TO US.”
But the extent of his private involvement in encouraging House Republicans to plow forward with the process shows the influence he continues to wield inside the party as its likely presidential nominee. It could also spark further attacks from Biden’s camp that impeachment is being done merely to bloody him up before the election.
Trump was impeached twice by the Democratic-controlled House during his tenure — first, over his pressure campaign against Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to investigate Biden, and later for his role in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
Trump will be in Washington at the end of the week and is taping an interview with Megyn Kelly on Wednesday.