The United States House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a resolution to submit articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the Senate for trial, The New York Times reported. The resolution was adopted 228 votes against 193 – largely along party lines.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi signed copies of the articles alongside seven Democratic Party legislators who will prosecute the case against Trump, BBC reported. “We are here today to cross a very important threshold in American history,” Pelosi said on the House floor before the vote on the resolution. Regardless of the outcome, Trump would be “impeached for life”, she added.
Last month, Trump was impeached by the House on charges of abuse of power and for obstructing Congress, as he was formally accused of pressuring Ukraine to investigate Democratic Party leader Joe Biden – a leading contender for his party’s presidential nomination – while using as leverage a nearly $400-million package of military assistance.
The Senate, controlled by Trump’s Republican Party, will now decide whether to convict and remove him from office. Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell said the articles of impeachment would be exhibited at the Senate on Thursday noon. After that there will be a reading on the floor of the upper chamber. The trial would begin next Tuesday.
Trump, in his characteristic abrasive manner, hit out at the Democrats. “Cryin’ Chuck Schumer just said, ‘The American people want a fair trial in the Senate’,” he tweeted. “True, but why didn’t Nervous Nancy and Corrupt politician Adam ‘Shifty’ Schiff give us a fair trial in the House? It was the most lopsided and unfair basement hearing in the history of Congress!”
Apart from Schiff, who will lead the Democrats’ efforts to remove the president from office, Jerrold Nadler, head of the House judiciary committee, Hakeem Jeffries of New York, Zoe Lofgren of California, Jason Crow of Colorado, Val Demings of Florida and Sylvia Garcia of Texas will manage the case. White House lawyers Pat Cipollone and Jay Sekulow are expected to lead Trump’s defence team.
The Republicans control the Senate 53–47 and are most likely to acquit him. However, the trial may have repercussions for Trump’s re-election bid.