Connecticut impeachment is discussed

Democratic lawmakers caucus on governor's fate

January 09, 2004|By HARTFORD COURANT

HARTFORD, Conn. - State House Speaker Moira K. Lyons said last night that House Democrats have decided either to create an investigative committee or to begin impeachment proceedings against Gov. John G. Rowland.

House Democrats who met in a closed-door caucus for about seven hours were leaning toward beginning the impeachment process against Rowland, a Republican, Lyons said.

Lyons, of Stamford, said caucus members concluded that there was only one other option: forming an investigative committee with subpoena power. Lyons, who will have the final say on which path to take, said she will make a decision after hearing from Republicans today.

"From what I've heard tonight, we must take action," Lyons said. "The eyes of Connecticut and our people are upon us."

One day after Rowland's televised address failed to turn public opinion in his favor, the governor came under increased pressure yesterday as two Senate Republicans called on him to step down. The resignation calls came as the second statewide poll this week reported that more than half of respondents believe Rowland, beset by a widening federal corruption investigation, should resign.

The latest poll, by the University of Connecticut, also indicated that 60 percent of those surveyed were unmoved by Rowland's contrite address Wednesday.

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