Flanked by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff and a number of other top Democrats Tuesday morning, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler officially announced two articles of impeachment will be brought against President Trump. The first charge will be obstruction of Congress. The second, abuse of power.
“Today in service to our duty to the Constitution and our country, the House committee introduces two articles impeachment charging Donald Trump with committing high crimes and misdemeanors,” Nadler said.
Democrats claim the abuse of power stems from President Trump’s July 25 phone call with the president of Ukraine about corruption investigations. The obstruction charge, they argue, is justified due to the White House blocking witnesses from testifying. Keep in mind Schiff and Nadler could have gone to the courts to compel witnesses and in a rush to impeach, refused.
“The President used the power of his office against a foreign country to corrupt our upcoming elections. He is a continuing threat to our democracy and national security. At 9 am ET, the House will announce our intent to #DefendOurDemocracy,” Pelosi tweeted earlier in the day.
During the announcement, Nadler also laid out a timeline. The Judiciary Committee will vote by the end of the week on the charges and send them to the House floor for a full vote before Christmas. From there, if enough Democrats vote to pass it, the charges will go to the Senate for a full trial.
Meanwhile, Republicans are responding.
With this disgusting impeachment charade, House Democrats have proven themselves guilty of Abuse of Power and Obstruction of Congress.— Lee Zeldin (@RepLeeZeldin) December 10, 2019
And moderate Democrats appear to be hedging:
Rep. Collin Peterson, who was one of two Ds to vote against formalizing the impeachment procedures, told me this when asked if he’d vote against all articles: “I’m certainly leaning that way....I just think it will be too divisive for the country - it doesn’t accomplish anything”— Manu Raju (@mkraju) December 10, 2019
This story has been updated with additional information.