The House of Representatives voted to impeach President Donald Trump on Wednesday (December 18) for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress along partisan lines: 230 to 197 in favor of abuse of power and 229 to 198 of obstruction of Congress. Now, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is holding the articles back from the Senate until it becomes clear that the chamber will conduct a fair hearing, The New York Times reported Thursday (December 19).
This move allows Pelosi to leverage the articles for negotiation over how the Senate will move forward with the next phase and delay the timing of the trial, which would decide whether to acquit Trump or convict and remove him from the White House. “We will make our decision as to when we are going to send it when we see what they are doing on the Senate side,” Pelosi said, according to The Times. “So far, we have not seen anything that looks fair to us.”
The lack of fairness that Pelosi referenced stems from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). The Times quoted McConnell saying that he was taking him cues on how to move forward with the trial from the White House. Based on last night’s votes, Republicans, who currently control the Senate, will likely be in lock-step with the White House.
Even still, being impeached as a president is a big deal, especially when it has only happened twice before. According to the House’s History, Art & Archives website, the founders feared the abuse of power from the highest office so much that they made impeachment part of the Constitution before they even defined the real roles of the presidency. Below are Twitter reactions that speak to the enormity of this vote:
I always hated the kids in class who said “present” instead of “here.” So annoying.— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) December 19, 2019
In this instance, Impeachment is you and ya homegirls having all the evidence that ya man is cheating but to break up with him you gotta convince a jury of his frat brothers (who was there with him cheating) that your man is a cheater https://t.co/DPL0TFDwJ8— Roy Wood Jr- Ex Jedi (@roywoodjr) December 19, 2019
“Once the Senate takes over, it seems incredibly likely that McConnell will make good on his word and exonerate Trump. It won’t be a trial. It will be a partisan farce.” https://t.co/ASSssmiOc1— Mimi Rocah (@Mimirocah1) December 19, 2019
#ImpeachmentDay: Donald Trump, Cheeto-In-Chief, Worst Of His Name, Nude Emperor Of Mildewed MAGAs, Dean Of Deplorables, And Kanye West’s Favorite Flaccid Fleshlight Has Officially Been Impeached (Image via JEFF KOWALSKY/AFP via Getty Images)https://t.co/zjd1ykZJuS pic.twitter.com/BXJDEQD11I— Bossip (@Bossip) December 19, 2019