House will draft Impeachment Charges against Trump ­

Nancy Pelosi said she was instructing House committee chairmen to move forward with articles of impeachment against Trump; another hearing is scheduled for Monday.

WASHINGTON (The New York Times) — Nancy Pelosi just announced today, Thursday December 05 2019, that the House of Representatives will begin drafting the impeachment articles against Donald Trump, pushing ahead a timetable for a vote before Christmas to charge him with high crimes and misdemeanors.

Ms. Pelosi said it had become clear over the course of two months of investigation that Mr. Trump had violated his oath of office by pressing a foreign power for help in the 2020 election. Allowing Mr. Trump to continue in office, would come at “the peril of our republic.”

“His wrongdoing strikes at the very heart of our Constitution… Our democracy is what is at stake. The president leaves us no choice but to act because he is trying to corrupt, once again, the election for his own benefit.” Pelosi stated

The announcement came as the House Judiciary Committee laid out the next steps for the formal impeachment proceedings against Trump. The committee will convene a hearing on Monday morning to allow its lawyers and those for the Intelligence Committee to formally present the evidence in the inquiry.

The witness lineup suggested the panel could consider both the president’s dealings with Ukraine and whether he obstructed justice in trying to thwart the special counsel’s investigation in whether the Trump campaign had a role in Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.

Officials close to the matter believe the Judiciary panel is on track to begin publicly debating and voting on articles by the end of next week, despite uniform Republican opposition. That would lay the groundwork for a possible vote to impeach the president by Dec. 20, the final day Congress is scheduled to be in session this year.

Pelosi´s decision to move forward, follows a two-month inquiry by Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee that concluded Trump abused his power by pressuring President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, while withholding a White House meeting and $391 million in vital military assistance.

In saying that she was instructing “chairmen” to draft the charges, Ms. Pelosi  left open the possibility that the other five panels that have investigated Mr. Trump and his administration — including the Intelligence Committee that drew up the Ukraine report and the Ways and Means Committee that has pressed for the release of the president’s tax returns — could also play roles, a break with past practice.

“This isn’t about Ukraine; this is about Russia, who benefited by our withholding of that military assistance,” Ms. Pelosi said. “So sometimes people say, ‘Well, I don’t know about Ukraine, I don’t know that much about Ukraine.’ Well, our adversary is Russia. All roads lead to Putin. Understand that.”

If the Democrats manage to impeach Donald Trump, he would be the 3rd president in US history to face removal by Congress. The proceedings, unfolding less than a year before the 2020 election, will play out amid profound partisan divisions, with Democrats pressing forward amid intense Republican opposition.

 

The Yucatan Times
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