U.S. President Donald Trump impeached for obstruction and abuse of power
The U.S. House of Representatives has impeached Donald Trump for soliciting foreign interference in next year's election and stonewalling an investigation into it, making him only the third president in history to face the sanction.
The Democratic-controlled House approved two articles of impeachment Wednesday evening, charging Mr. Trump with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Mr. Trump will now face a trial in the Republican-controlled Senate, which would have to convict by a two-thirds vote to remove him from office.
The outcome of the vote was never in doubt, but the House spent all day debating it.
“This is a democracy-defining moment,” Jim McGovern, a Massachusetts Democrat who chairs the House rules committee, told the chamber shortly after the day began at 9 a.m. “History will judge us by whether we keep intact that fragile republic handed down to us by our forebears over 200 years ago, or whether we will allow it to be changed forever.”
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi received an ovation from fellow Democrats as she accused Mr. Trump of jeopardizing the integrity of the country’s elections.
“It is tragic that the President’s reckless actions make impeachment necessary. He gave us no choice,” she said. “What we are discussing today is the established fact that the President violated the Constitution.”
Republican members fired back by insisting Mr. Trump had done nothing wrong, and that the swift impeachment process — in which the President refused to participate — had not been fair to him.
“When Jesus was falsely accused of treason, Pontius Pilate gave Jesus the opportunity to face his accusers. During that sham trial, Pontius Pilate afforded more rights to Jesus than Democrats have afforded this President in this process,” thundered Barry Loudermilk, a Republican from Georgia.
Mr. Trump, who has a light public schedule before an evening rally in Michigan, spent much of the morning on Twitter weighing in on the proceedings.
“SUCH ATROCIOUS LIES BY THE RADICAL LEFT, DO NOTHING DEMOCRATS,” he wrote in the early afternoon. “THIS IS AN ASSAULT ON AMERICA, AND AN ASSAULT ON THE REPUBLICAN PARTY!!!!