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2020 Democrats talk impeachment on the campaign trail

Democratic presidential candidates spent the weekend in early primary states, where there was one major topic on their minds: the formal impeachment inquiry into President Trump. All 19 Democrats now support that inquiry, with some saying the details in the whistleblower complaint are the president's clearest offenses yet. Yamiche Alcindor reports.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    Democratic presidential candidates spent this weekend crisscrossing early primary states.

    And as Yamiche Alcindor is back to report, from Nevada to South Carolina to New Hampshire, there was one major topic on their minds.

  • Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.:

    We have a constitutional obligation to move forward with this impeachment investigation.

  • Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J.:

    I worry that this election is being overshadowed by all that's going on. It's being overshadowed by impeachment proceedings.

  • Pete Buttigieg:

    This presidency has got to come to an end for the good of the republic. I think we can all agree on that.

  • Yamiche Alcindor:

    It was the first weekend of campaigning since House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced a formal an impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

    All 19 Democratic candidates support that inquiry. The last holdout, Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, changed her mind on Friday. Some said the details in the whistle-blower complaint are the clearest impeachable offenses yet.

  • Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.:

    This latest business with Ukraine, where it appears that he is willing to take taxpayer dollars and dangle them in front of a foreign country in order to help himself and his own political chances of being reelected, it's wrong. It's a violation of the law.

  • Yamiche Alcindor:

    President Trump has tried to turn attention to former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter's business dealings in Ukraine.

    Warren said she would consider a ban on presidential children serving on boards of foreign companies. She added that the focus should be on Trump's actions.

    California Senator Kamala Harris came to Biden's defense.

  • Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif.:

    As far as I'm concerned leave Joe Biden. Just leave him alone. I'm not going to be distracted by what this president is trying to play, which is a game, because he knows that he is actually probably looking at an indictment.

  • Yamiche Alcindor:

    If the House does impeach President Trump, six Democratic candidates will have a vote in the Senate on whether to remove him from office.

    Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders urged Majority Leader Mitch McConnell not to hold up a vote, though, currently, there are not the 67 votes required to convict the president.

  • Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.:

    I ask Mitch McConnell to do the right thing and make sure that the Senate begins that trial immediately after the impeachment process is over.

  • Yamiche Alcindor:

    McConnell said today the Senate would have — quote — "no choice" but to take up impeachment.

    Meanwhile, with just hours until the end of the quarterly fund-raising deadline, campaigns sent a flood of e-mails to supporters soliciting contributions. Those efforts come as the Democratic National Committee continues to raise the bar for candidates to make it onto the debate stage.

    For the "PBS NewsHour," I'm Yamiche Alcindor.

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