Democrat Chair of the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee Jerry Nadler revealed the articles – akin to charges – in Washington DC Tuesday. And House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff said Trump had committed ‘high crimes and misdemeanors.’
Nadler claimed that the president had imperiled US national security by trying to get Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate political rival Joe Biden’s son in return for a White House invite, as well as $400m in military aid. The obstruction of Congress charge centers around claims that Trump tried to frustrate the investigation into his alleged abuse of power during his communications with Zelensky. Nadler accused Trump of putting himself ‘consistently above country’.
He said there is a ‘clear remedy for presidents who so violate their oath of office – that is impeachment.’
Schiff then explained the Democrats’ reasoning behind the articles, saying that President Trump ‘abused the power of his office to get a foreign power to help his reelection.’ He further attacked Trump’s alleged ‘willingness to sacrifice US national security for his own interests.’
He hit out at those who called impeachment proceedings premature, saying: ‘The president’s misconduct goes to the heart of whether we can have a free and fair election in 2020. ‘We will defend the constitution, and our oath means something to us.’ And Schiff added: ‘No one is above the law: not even the President of the United States.’
Trump is only the fourth president in US history to face impeachment. He issued a furious Twitter rebuttal Tuesday morning, writing: ‘Nadler just said that I “pressured Ukraine to interfere in our 2020 Election.”
‘Ridiculous, and he knows that is not true. Both the President & Foreign Minister of Ukraine said, many times, that there “WAS NO PRESSURE.” ‘Nadler and the Dems know this, but refuse to acknowledge! ‘WITCH HUNT!’ Trump’s tirade continued: ‘Shifty Schiff, a totally corrupt politician, made up a horrible and fraudulent statement, read it to Congress, and said those words came from me. ‘He got caught, was very embarrassed, yet nothing happened to him for committing this fraud.
He’ll eventually have to answer for this! ‘Read the Transcripts! “us” is a reference to USA, not me!’ The articles unveiled today will now be voted on by members of the lower house of the US Congress, the House of Representatives. They could ultimately result in Trump being put on trial in the upper House – the Senate – with Representatives from the lower House acting as prosecutors.
Unlike the House of Representatives, the Senate has a Republican majority, with its senators currently considered unlikely to oust their own president. Trump is accused of getting his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani to dangle a coveted White House invite to his Ukrainian counterpart in exchange for a probe into a potential rival.
Giuliani reportedly offered Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky the invite on the proviso Joe Biden’s son Hunter would be investigated, over his links to Ukrainian natural gas firm Burisma.
Former Vice President Biden is frontrunner to face Trump in the 2020 presidential election, with Trump making repeated attempts to try and smear his rival’s credibility. During a July 25 phone call, Trump is also accused of suggesting that Zelensky should get his country’s prosecutors to investigate Hunter Biden in return for $400m military aid provided by the US.
Democrats say Trump’s behavior constitutes using his presidential office for personal gain. He denies any wrongdoing, and has branded impeachment proceedings a ‘witch hunt.’