RNA - In an interview after the House of Representatives passed a resolution on Thursday to formally proceed with the impeachment inquiry against Trump, Pelosi said, "This is a sad thing for our country. We do this prayerfully with great seriousness. Nobody goes to Congress to impeach a president."
She was asked about her reaction to learning about a July phone call in which Trump asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate his main Democratic rival, former US vice president Joe Biden.
"I prayed for the United States of America," she replied. "It's very a sad thing, we don't want to impeach a president. We don't want a reality that a president has done something that is in violation of the constitution."
Democrats launched an impeachment inquiry in September after a whistleblower alleged the Republican president pressured Ukraine to investigate Biden.
That request by Trump, and accusations he conditioned nearly $400 million in military aid to Ukraine on the political favor, form the basis of the impeachment inquiry that now threatens his presidency.
House Democrats say Trump has abused his office for personal gain and jeopardized national security by asking Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskiy to investigate Biden and his son, Hunter, who had served as a director for Ukrainian energy company Burisma.
Pelosi also addressed this in the interview.
"So much had happened before and I had not been, shall we say, enthusiastic about the divisiveness that would occur," she said. "But this was something that you could not ignore. In one conversation he undermined our national security by withholding military assistance to a country that had been voted on by the Congress of the United States...At the same time, he jeopardized the integrity of our elections."
"In doing so, in my view, he possibly violated his oath of office," Pelosi claimed.
She also described the call as "a smoking gun."
The House, which is controlled by Democrats, passed the measure on Thursday.
The lower chamber of Congress voted largely along party lines, 232 to 196, to formalize the process. Only two Democrats, along with all Republicans, voted against the resolution.
According to Press TV, the measure, which was unveiled on Tuesday by the House Rules Committee, detailed how the inquiry will move into a more public phase and was not a vote on whether to impeach the Republican president.
The resolution comes as pressure grows on Democrats to make Trump’s impeachment inquiry more open, including holding public hearings with key witnesses in the Ukraine affair that has overwhelmed the White House.
Pelosi expects impeachment hearings in November
On Friday, Pelosi said she expects the House to hold public hearings this month in its impeachment inquiry into Trump.
“I would assume there would be public hearing in November,” Pelosi said, adding that the case against Trump “has to be ironclad.”
However, she said that she didn't "know what the timetable will be" for the probe overall, adding, "The truth will set us free."
“We have not made any decisions on if the president will be impeached," she insisted.