Late last night after two articles of impeachment were passed by House Democrats, Speaker Nancy Pelosi indicated she wouldn't be sending them to the Senate for a trial anytime soon. On Thursday afternoon, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer announced no additional votes will be taken until January 7.
Reporter: Can you guarantee that the impeachment articles will be at some point sent to the Senate? Can you guarantee that? @SpeakerPelosi: That would've been our intention, but we'll see what happens over there. pic.twitter.com/oEEtK0nDdH— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) December 19, 2019
Hoyer announces no more votes until January 7. Big cheer goes up in House chamber. This means the House won't approve a resolution on impeachment mgrs & to send impeachment pkg to Senate until at least January, 2020— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) December 19, 2019
But according to leftist Harvard Law Professor Noah Feldman, who testified on behalf of Democrats in front of the House Judiciary Committee earlier this month, President Trump isn't actually impeached until the Pelosi sends the articles to the other side of Capitol Hill. Feldman argues this point in a new piece for Bloomberg titled, "Trump Isn’t Impeached Until the House Tells the Senate."
According to the Constitution, impeachment is a process, not a vote
If the House does not communicate its impeachment to the Senate, it hasn’t actually impeached the president. If the articles are not transmitted, Trump could legitimately say that he wasn’t truly impeached at all."
The Constitution doesn’t say how fast the articles must go to the Senate. Some modest delay is not inconsistent with the Constitution, or how both chambers usually work.
But an indefinite delay would pose a serious problem. Impeachment as contemplated by the Constitution does not consist merely of the vote by the House, but of the process of sending the articles to the Senate for trial. Both parts are necessary to make an impeachment under the Constitution: The House must actually send the articles and send managers to the Senate to prosecute the impeachment. And the Senate must actually hold a trial.
During the impeachment inquiry hearing held by House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadley, Feldman argued vehimately that President Trump should be impeached. He was also outed as a partisan who has been advocating impeachment for years.