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California Billionaire Steyer Criticized For Impeachment Campaign

RENO, Nev. (AP) — A California billionaire urging the impeachment of President Donald Trump denies suggestions that his efforts are helping Republican politicians including Nevada Republican Sen. Dean Heller running in the upcoming elections.

Democratic megadonor Tom Steyer spoke in Reno on Wednesday as part of a 30-city "Need to Impeach" town hall tour, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported.

So far, he's collected about 5.4 million signatures in support of the impeachment campaign, Steyer said. The campaign is also backed by 66 congress people and "plenty of celebrities."

Although he knows there is no real chance of impeaching Trump any time soon and many fellow Democrats believe he should stop, Steyer plans to continue with his effort.

"It's about giving the American people a chance to raise their voice on (impeachment), because I think it's the most important question in front of us," he said. "That's really the only thing that elected officials will listen to anyway."

Democratic leaders fear Steyer's campaign will only fire up pro-Trump voters who they hope will stay home during November's general elections.

U.S. Rep. Jacky Rosen's campaign said in a statement Thursday that Rosen does not support an impeachment campaign because she wants special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia-focused election meddling investigation to continue without any political interference.

She is running against Heller for his seat in the Senate.

"This isn't about politics or party labels, it's about doing what's right and that's exactly what Jacky fights for every day serving Nevadans in Congress," the statement said.

The San Francisco-based hedge fund tycoon is also funding $2 million millennial-focused voter turnout effort against Heller and Republican Attorney General Adam Laxalt, who is running for governor.

Laxalt and other state Republicans have called Steyer's efforts an example of the California's creeping influence Nevada politics.

© Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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