WASHINGTON (WRIC) – In two historic votes mostly along party lines, the U.S. House of Representatives approved articles of impeachment charging President Donald J. Trump of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress on Wednesday, making Trump only the third president in history to be impeached.
The next phase in the impeachment process will be a trial held in the Senate, which is expected early next year.
Senators will decide whether to convict Trump and remove him from office or acquit him of the charges, which is seen as the most likely path with a Republican majority in the Senate.
An official impeachment inquiry was opened in September by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) after allegations surfaced that Trump withheld military aid and used his power as president to pressure Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate Joe Biden, a possible 2020 opponent, and his Biden’s son, Hunter.
The House Judiciary Committee approved two articles of impeachment against Trump, for abuse of power and for obstruction of Congress, on Dec. 13 after weeks of public hearings in the House Intelligence Committee.
The full House vote came after six hours of scheduled debate Wednesday where lawmakers argued over the charges brought against Trump.
The president’s supporters in Congress have maintained that Trump’s actions were not impeachable, arguing that the military aid was eventually given to Ukraine and no investigation into the Biden’s dealings in Ukraine was ever announced by Zelensky.
This story is developing. Check back for updates.
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