House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that Democrats would begin drafting articles of imepachment against President Trump, The New York Times reports.
Pelosi is pushing ahead with a speedy impeachment proceeding that could see a vote on the articles of impeachment before Christmas.
“His wrongdoing strikes at the very heart of our Constitution,” Pelosi said in a statement on Thursday. “Our democracy is what is at stake. The president leaves us no choice but to act because he is trying to corrupt, once again, the election for his own benefit.”
“The facts are uncontested. The president abused his power for his own personal political benefit, at the expense of our national security,” she said. “Sadly, but with confidence and humility, with allegiance to our founders and a heart full of love for America, today I am asking our chairmen to proceed with articles of impeachment.”
Trump calls for fast impeachment:
Just before Pelosi’s announcement, Trump called for a fast impeachment.
“I say, if you are going to impeach me, do it now, fast, so we can have a fair trial in the Senate, and so that our Country can get back to business. We will have Schiff, the Bidens, Pelosi and many more testify, and will reveal, for the first time, how corrupt our system really is. I was elected to ‘Clean the Swamp,’ and that’s what I am doing!” he tweeted.
After the announcement, Trump complained that Democrats were trying to impeach him.
“The Do Nothing, Radical Left Democrats have just announced that they are going to seek to Impeach me over NOTHING. They already gave up on the ridiculous Mueller ‘stuff,’ so now they hang their hats on two totally appropriate (perfect) phone calls with the Ukrainian President,” he wrote. “This will mean that the beyond important and seldom used act of Impeachment will be used routinely to attack future Presidents. That is not what our Founders had in mind. The good thing is that the Republicans have NEVER been more united. We will win!”
Law scholars say Trump committed impeachable offense:
Pelosi’s announcement came one day after the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing with a panel of Constitutional scholars.
"If what we're talking about is not impeachable, then nothing is impeachable," said Prof. Michael Gerhardt of North Carolina University. "This is precisely the misconduct that the framers created a Constitution, including impeachment, to protect against."
“Everything I know about our Constitution and its values, and my review of the evidentiary record, tells me that when President Trump invited — indeed, demanded — foreign involvement in our upcoming election, he struck at the very heart of what makes this country the ‘republic’ to which we pledge allegiance,” added Stanford Law Prof. Pamela Karlan. “That demand constituted an abuse of power. Indeed, as I want to explain in my testimony, drawing a foreign government into our election process is an especially serious abuse of power because it undermines democracy itself.”