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Trump Impeachment Trial: Will It Continue After the GOP Votes to Block It? What to know



Donald Trump

The House impeached Trump again – here’s what that means.

Mandel Ngan / Getty Images

The impeachment trial against former President Donald Trump is slated to start in just 12 days, but Democrats may reconsider whether it has yet to happen. Moments after senators were sworn in as jurors on Monday, 45 Republicans led by Senator Rand Paul came to declare the trial of a former president “unconstitutional”.

Although the motion failed and the trial will continue, it has revealed how many Republicans are against the trial. Now some Democratic senators are starting to question whether it would be a waste of time and resources to pursue an impeachment process that was likely to fail.

The overwhelming Republican support in the vote was seen as an early demonstration of the GOP’s loyalty to the former president. Five Republicans voted against the motion, but 17 Republicans should vote in favor of condemning Trump, leading Paul to call the trial “dead on arrival.”

Senate leader Mitch McConnell – despite previously saying he believed Trump had committed “untouchable transgressions” – voted Paul. Given McConnell’s vote, Democrats are starting to consider a bipartisan instead disapproval, which is a formal, non-binding statement of disapproval, from Trump instead of a trial, The New York Times reported Thursday.

Republican Senator John Thune, who also voted with the GOP bloc, said he does not think the vote against the impeachment will “bind anyone once the trial begins.” McConnell still hasn’t explained his vote, but told reporters on Wednesday that he plans to remain open during the trial.

“The trial hasn’t started yet,” McConnell said. “I intend to participate and listen to the evidence.”

At the heart of the motion to declare the impeachment process unconstitutional is Trump’s current status as a private person, not a sitting president. The timing of the Senate trial – which will take place after Trump resigns – is a historic first. He is also the first president to be impeached twice. The House of Representatives voted on January 13 to impeach Trumpwhile he was still in office.

There is nothing “unconstitutional” about impeaching a former official, said senate leader Chuck Schumer, said Senate majority leader, as reported by CNN and other outlets. “It has been completely debunked by constitutional scientists from across the political spectrum.”

In other dramatic pre-trial events, the trial’s presiding officer, new Senate Pro Tempore Senator Patrick Leahy, 80, was briefly hospitalized for several hours on Tuesday after unspecified “ tests. ” While Leahy is ready to carry out his duties, the hospitalization, along with Paul’s unexpected motion (lost by 55-45 votes), underscore the unusual nature of Trump’s impeachment process – both in timing and against the broader background of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Trump is expected to face trial starting February 9, where he faces a single impeachment article for incitement to insurgency, regarding his role in the deadly riot at the Capitol on January 6.

The siege of the Capitol was intended to overturn the 2020 election results and halt the process of confirming President Joe Biden’s victory in the Electoral College. Biden was confirmed after the riot and was later on inaugurated on January 20. In a historic moment, 10 House Republicans broke with their party to vote for impeachment.

We will explain what we know about how the impeachment process might go, what it takes to convict or acquit, what is at stake and where the situation is now. This story has been updated with new information.

read more: The 14th Amendment comes into discussion about Trump’s impeachment

Diagram of Trump’s impeachment process

The trial will proceed as follows:

  • January 25: Article of impeachment presented to the Senate
  • Jan 26: Senators sworn in, Trump subpoena issued
  • Feb 2: Trump’s response to article on impeachment
  • Feb 8: Trump’s preliminary briefing follows
  • Feb 9: House’s preliminary rebuttal due; trial begins.

What would happen if Trump was convicted or acquitted?

If the former president is convicted in the Senate, there will be an additional vote to prevent him from re-entering (Article 1, paragraph 3 of the Constitution), preventing a possible presidential election of Trump in 2024. Only a simple majority is required for this vote. , where Vice President Kamala Harris would draw a tie if necessary.

Trump could also be disqualified for the benefits given to former presidents by the Post Presidents Act, including a Secret Service security detail, pension, and annual travel allowance.

Depicted presidents also cannot be pardoned under the US Constitution.

If acquitted, Trump would have access to all the benefits of a former US president, including the option to run for public office.

What Happens During Trump’s Impeachment Trial?

The US Constitution provides clear guidelines for impeaching a sitting president and other officials for “treason, bribery, or other serious crimes and offenses.” However, the Trump trial is an uncommon case. With his second impeachment, Trump, who has been a private person since January 20, is the first president to be impeached twice and the first to be tried after leaving office.

The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court would normally chair the impeachment process of a president. But since it’s not a trial against a sitting president, the Supreme Court Chief Justice will not chair this impeachment trial – instead, it will be the new Senate President Pro Tempore, Senator Patrick Leahy, who, as Senator, is. also expects to be able to vote in the process.

The House will prosecute the case and the Senate will sit as a jury and ultimately vote for conviction or acquittal.

To condemn Trump, 67 senators – or two-thirds of the Senate – must vote in favor. After Biden’s inauguration, the Senate now consists of 48 Democrats, two independents who consult with Democrats and 50 Republicans, for an even 50-50 split.

Why was Trump impeached before?

Yes. Trump was impeached by the House in December 2019. The Republican Majority The Senate acquitted him in early 2020.

His first charge involved articles accusing Trump of abuse of power and obstructing Congress. The problem was Trump’s dealings with Ukraine, including a phone call in July 2019 in which he appeared to be using US military aid as a bargaining chip to pressure Ukraine to break the alleged ties between his political opponent Biden, Biden’s son Hunter and a Ukrainian gas company. to research. The articles also accused Trump of interfering with a home investigation into the Ukraine issue.

CNET’s Jessica Dolcourt contributed to this report.




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