A heated, partisan impeachment fight is underway on Capitol Hill, which the hysterical Democratic Party claims to be urgent in the interest of preserving Democracy. In the interest of winning the messaging battle, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is attempting to go toe-to-toe with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell by refusing to hand the articles over to the upper chamber until the GOP majority agrees to her impeachment terms line by line. In true McConnell fashion, the senator from Kentucky stopped Speaker Pelosi’s public relations stunt in its tracks, uniting the GOP majority in his chamber behind impeachment framework that mirrored the trial of former President Clinton. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) attempted to salvage the Speaker’s efforts, to try and claim some victory, but it is clear that the Republicans won this one.
Some Democrats in the upper chamber are breaking with Madam Speaker, per NBC News, telling Pelosi that it is time to turn the articles over to the GOP-controlled Senate.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL), Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT), Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Sen. Angus King (I-ME) all expressed that it was time for Speaker Pelosi quit holding the articles over the head of the upper chamber, NBC reported.
More @Sen_JoeManchin:— Mike DeBonis (@mikedebonis) January 7, 2020
"I think it needs to start, I really do. I can't tell the House how to do their business. I would never try to tell Speaker Pelosi. But the bottom line is,x the holdout helped force Bolton to step forward. "Let us do what we have to do over here."
Senator Diane Feinstein even weighed in:
Dianne Feinstein says it’s time for Speaker Nancy Pelosi to send the impeachment articles to the Senate.— Laura Litvan (@LauraLitvan) January 8, 2020
“If we’re going to do it, she should send them over,” the California Democrat said. “I don’t see what good delay does.”
Speaker Pelosi is still digging her heels in, refusing to cede this fight that she never had any real leverage in. Pelosi is undoubtedly a talented legislator, but this was not a fight she was ever going to win. She has zero power over the way that the U.S. Senate conducts business, and the impeachment trial rests solely with the upper chamber.
MCCONNELL responds to Pelosi asking that impeachment trial rules be released before sending over articles: "The Senate will address all these questions at the appropriate time, and that is for the Senate and the Senate only to decide, period."— Frank Thorp V (@frankthorp) January 8, 2020
Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee Lindsey Graham (R-SC) also chimed in, weighing the option of altering the procedure to set the trial in motion without Speaker Pelosi:
Graham on Pelosi: "If by the end of the week she has not transmitted the articles I hope we will change the rules so we can start the trial without her.” Takes 51 yeas to alter impeachment rules. But 60 or 67 votes (depending on how it's handled) to end a filibuster on that score— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) January 8, 2020
Speaker Pelosi tried to gain leverage in her highly partisan impeachment battle, but really undermined her own efforts and messaging. By refusing to transmit the articles her own chamber voted to approve, Speaker Pelosi is undermining her own narrative, that this impeachment was a dire necessity to save Democracy and the Constitution. If impeachment were really a timely requisite, she would have turned the articles over to Leader McConnell immediately.