The hope among some Democrats that President Trump might be removed through impeachment took a hit when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) poured cold water on the idea earlier this month. Special Counsel Robert Mueller's final report, as filtered through Attorney General William Barr, appears to have quashed those hopes completely, "at least for now," The Washington Post reports.
Pelosi "and members of her leadership team agreed in a Monday night huddle that the caucus needs to stop talking about collusion with Russia because it was distracting from their legislative agenda." Notably, three people familiar with the meeting told the Post, liberal Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.) and Trump-district Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.) "both argued that the House needs to megaphone pocketbook issues that won them the majority."
House Democrats still plan to demand Barr release Mueller's complete report and supplemental material, and members of all ideological stripes say it's important to continue investigating Trump's administration and actions, the Post said. "Some House Democrats suggested Monday that they will double down on a strategy of attempting to cripple Trump with what one aide described as 'a thousand cuts.'"
The group of Democrats least affected by Mueller's report may be the 2020 presidential candidates, who haven't been talking much about Mueller or impeachment and aren't being asked about the subject. "Indeed, Democratic strategists have long said their party's best message for next year's election — absent a stunning revelation from the Mueller report — would focus on pocketbook issues like health care," McClatchy reports. "Polls show voters care more about those subjects, and Democrats were able to use a message fixated on protections for pre-existing conditions to gain 40 seats in the House last year." In that realm, at least, Trump is providing plenty of fodder. Peter Weber