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Former Sen. Harry Reid Says Stop The Impeachment Talk

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

To Democrats chattering about a possible impeachment of President Donald Trump, former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has this to say - stop it. In an NBC News interview, he said he knows firsthand what impeachment proceedings would be like. Harry Reid joins us on the line from Las Vegas. Welcome to the program.

HARRY REID: Thanks for allowing me to be on your show.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: You didn't have kind words for Donald Trump in that interview, but why did you think Democrats who want to impeach him are misguided?

REID: I've sat through impeachment. I understand that it's not a walk in the park. It takes a supermajority to impeach a president, and it's just not going to happen. And I think that we would be better off focusing on health care, the huge, huge amounts of money in politics that is ruining the body politic, climate change, which is sweeping the world.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: So what I think you're saying is you need to - the Democrats have to have another message that isn't solely about removing the president.

REID: Yeah, let's talk about things that are doable. Let's talk about immigration. Let's talk about the fact that we have a situation now where we have nearly a million young men and women who Trump's talking about deporting - these are the DREAMers.

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GARCIA-NAVARRO: When you impart this message to the Democratic Party, how do you think it's received? I mean, that message of impeaching Donald Trump is certainly motivating to a certain part of the Democratic base and some of its big donors.

REID: Well, as you will know from my career in Congress, I'm really not too concerned not how my colleagues feel. I just feel it's important that I tell you how I feel. And I feel that focusing on impeachment is wrong. It's not helping my people in Nevada. It's not helping people around the country.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: You're saying that they shouldn't talk about impeaching the president, but let's say they do take the House and the Senate. Do you think they should try to?

REID: It's a very, very difficult thing to do. You need large, large majorities. And you're not going to get that in the - if we're fortunate enough to take the Senate, it'll just be by a narrow, narrow margin. That's not going to get anyone impeached.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: What is another unifying message that can bring all the different factions of the Democratic Party together? You named a number of different things that are important, but there is some concern that the Democrats simply don't have a unifying message that they can take to the voters.

REID: We hear that year after year after year. This is the same message when I went to Congress almost forty years ago. Right now we have a unifying message - it's the Washington is not doing very well. Why? The man leading the country is not somebody that's unifying the country, not unifying the world. And that's the message. The message is that's there. We don't have to talk about it. No one has to talk about it. Everyone knows about it. So let's get off that. Let's get off impeachment, and let's talk about people who are losing their health care as we speak because of what the Republicans have done to Obamacare. I think there's a lot of unifying things that we can talk about, and we should be talking about them.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Former Senator Harry Reid, thank you very much.

REID: Thank you.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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