A strictly partisan vote on the House Judiciary Committee on Friday resulted in the Democrat-controlled body voting to advance articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump for allegedly abusing the power of his office and obstructing Congress.
“After a fractious two-day debate steeped in the Constitution and shaped by the realities of a hyperpartisan era in American politics, the Democratic-controlled committee recommended that the House ratify two articles of impeachment against the 45th president,” The New York Times reported. “In back-to-back morning votes, they adopted each charge against Mr. Trump by a margin of 23 to 17 over howls of Republican protest.”
A New York Times tracker that was updated on mid-Friday morning showed that for Democrats, 136 House members supported article of impeachment, 12 were undecided, and 85 had not responded to a request for comment. For Republicans, zero House members supported articles of impeachment, there were no undecided members, and 56 had not responded to a request for comment. The sole independent member of Congress supported impeachment.
This New York Times tracker on where members stand on impeachment, updated today at 10:50 AM, doesn't include stated Democrat opposition to impeachment. pic.twitter.com/pOs7xaeQdC
— Tommy Pigott (@TCPigott) December 13, 2019
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, having seen the supposed evidence that Democrats laid out over the past few months, has stated that there is “no chance” that the Senate will vote to remove Trump from office if the House votes to send impeachment to a trial in the Senate.
White House Press Secretary and Communications Director Stephanie Grisham issued a statement saying that the president was looking forward to a trial in the Senate.
“This desperate charade of an impeachment inquiry in the House Judiciary Committee has reached its shameful end,” Grisham said. “The President looks forward to receiving in the Senate the fair treatment and due process which continues to be disgracefully denied to him by the House.”
“He looks forward to a Senate trial that he seems sure to win and thinks that it will help him on the campaign trail when he travels the country boasting that he had been ‘exonerated’ after the latest partisan ‘witch hunt,’” The New York Times reported. “Mr. Trump’s mood has actually improved in the past couple of weeks, advisers say, as Republicans have risen to his defense. He has grown more energized, bombarding followers with tweets and retweets defending himself and attacking his enemies.”
South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, said, “He doesn’t like what’s happening. He thinks it’s unfair. But I think he’s resolved himself that they’re going to do it, they’re out to get him. I think he’s more determined now to win than ever.”
Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler was supposed to hold today’s vote last night but cancelled at the last minute, without notifying or consulting the Ranking Member.
“It has been a long two days of consideration of these articles [of impeachment] and it is now very late at night,” Nadler said. “I want the members on both sides of the aisle to think about what has happened over these last two days and to search their consciousnesses before we cast our final votes.”
“Therefore the committee will now stand in recess until tomorrow morning at 10 a.m. at which point I will move to divide the question so that each of us may have the opportunity to cast up or down votes on each of the articles of impeachment and tell history to be our judge,” Nadler continued. The Committee is in recess.”
Ranking Member Doug Collins slammed Nadler, “Mr. Chairman, there is no consulting from the Ranking Member on your schedule for tomorrow in which you just blown up schedules for everyone? You chose not to consult the Ranking Member on a schedule issue of this magnitude? This is kangaroo court that we’re talking about.”
“I’m not sure what to say at this second, I’ve been in public life now since 2006 and I have just witnessed the most bush league stunt I have ever witnessed in my professional life,” Collins said at a press conference immediately following the hearing. “The reason we had this tonight is we had worked this out tonight to finish up tonight [because] we have members who have flights, we have members who are getting on trains, we have members who are going home because this was going to finish up tonight. But to not even consult the Ranking Member, to not even give us a heads up, this is all we heard, and we had been consulting back and forth in the last few minutes and how we were going to end the speaking tonight … that was the most lack of integrity thing I have ever seen by a member of Congress, especially a Chairman.”