December 18, 2019
President Donald Trump has proven himself to be no match for Speaker Nancy Pelosi. On Wednesday, he faced an odds-on impeachment vote in the House, where Democrats enjoy a 36-seat majority, Reuters reported.
In voting for his impeachment, the House would make Trump the third president in U.S. history to be accused of “high Crimes and Misdemeanors,” as described in the Constitution—and declared guilty by official ballot.
Trump faces one charge of abusing his power by extorting Ukraine to investigate Biden, a leading Democratic contender to oppose him in the 2020 U.S. presidential election; and one of obstructing Congress’ investigation into the matter, Reuters said.
The president has denied wrongdoing and accused Democrats of a baseless and politically-motivated bid to oust him from power.
In a six-page letter delivered to Pelosi on the eve of the impeachment vote, Trump tried to turn the tables on the Democrats: “You are the ones interfering in America’s elections,” he wrote. “You are the ones subverting America’s Democracy. You are the ones Obstructing Justice. You are the ones bringing pain and suffering to our Republic for your own selfish, personal political, and partisan gain.”
A majority vote in the House would set the stage for a trial in the Senate, where Majority Leader Mitch McConnell already has vowed to follow the lead of the president and the White House counsel.
Republicans hold 53 of the 100 seats in the Senate, where they appear likely to prevail in any trial against Trump, which would require a two-thirds majority of those present to remove him from office, Reuters noted.
Seeking to shape any trial, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer called on Sunday for testimony from the Trump aides who allegedly viewed his criminal actions personally: White House acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, former national security adviser John Bolton, Mulvaney aide Robert Blair, and OMB official Michael Duffey.
The House Judiciary Committee voted 23-17 on December 13, along party lines, to approve the two articles of impeachment against Trump and to send the matter to the full chamber. Late on Sunday, the panel issued its full report detailing the case against him.
In a tweet on Monday, White House spokesperson Stephanie Grisham said Schumer’s comments seeking fairness were “laughable” after the release of the 658-page report “in the middle of the night. Thankfully the people of this country continue to see the partisan sham that this is.”
Research contact: @Reuters