House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has announced that the House of Representatives will move forward with a formal impeachment inquiry against President Trump. In a speech Tuesday evening, Pelosi said that the Trump’s presidency has shown a “betrayal of his oath of office, betrayal of our national security, and betrayal of the integrity of our elections.” No shit!
Pelosi also condemned the Trump’s administration efforts to “undermine” whistleblower protections. “This Thursday, the acting DNI [Director of National Intelligence] will appear before the House Intelligence Committee,” Pelosi said. “At that time, he must turn over the whistleblower’s full complaint to the committee. He will have the choose whether to break the law or honor his responsibility to the constitution.”
The push for impeachment proceedings has escalated among congressional Democrats following a recent whistleblower complaint that Trump pressured Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate Hunter Biden, the son of former vice president and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
Additionally, the Washington Post reports that one week prior to his conversation with Zelensky, Trump told his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, to withhold almost $400 million of military aid to Ukraine. (Trump himself confirmed that he withheld the funds, so there’s that, too!)
The rationale doesn’t hold water considering the billions in aid that European nations have contributed to Ukraine.
This has triggered a new wave confidence from House Democrats moving forward with impeachment proceedings. While many progressives in safe blue districts have been on the impeachment train for months (if not years), moderate Democrats are now jumping on board as well: seven freshman Democrats representing conservative districts penned an op-ed for the Washington Post Tuesday supporting impeachment, calling the new allegations against Trump a “threat to all we have sworn to protect.”
Currently, 179 out of 235 House Democrats support impeachment, and the number continues to grow. Congressional committees already investigating Trump also hope the impeachment process will grant them expedited access to documents, witnesses, and legal processes that the administration has been successfully stonewalling. But the process moving forward is messy as hell, honestly.
From the New York Times:
When the full House votes on articles of impeachment, if at least one gets a majority vote, the president is impeached — which is essentially the equivalent of being indicted.
Next, the proceedings move to the Senate, which is to hold a trial overseen by the chief justice of the Supreme Court.
A team of lawmakers from the House, known as managers, play the role of prosecutors. The president has defense lawyers, and the Senate serves as the jury.
If at least two-thirds of the senators find the president guilty, he is removed, and the vice president takes over as president.
No president has been removed from office as a direct outcome of impeachment proceedings and it’s doubtful that the Senate would vote to remove Trump from office because they are themselves very terrible. But there’s also a first time for everything?