On Thursday, U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that the House Judiciary Committee will begin drafting articles of impeachment against Donald Trump for holding up military funding in exchange for a political favor.
Pelosi 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.” The announcement marks the next step in the impeachment process against Trump that began back in September when Pelosi said the House would begin formal impeachment hearings.
Trump responded as he has for much of the process up to this point, that he has done nothing wrong, the phone call with Ukraine was “perfect,” and that it is the Democrats that are the problem. He tweeted, after Pelosi announced the House Judiciary committee will draft impeachment articles, “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. 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!”
Pelosi has said the House will be voting on impeachment before the end of the year, with the Judiciary Committee holding hearings next week on the specifics of the articles of impeachment, with a final vote possible by Dec. 20, the last day of the year the House is in session.
While it seems likely that the House will vote to impeach Trump, it is unlikely the Senate will follow through to fully remove the president from office. In the Senate, Republicans have a majority of 53 to 45, which makes it difficult to envision a scenario in which 21 Republicans would vote with the Democrats, and two Independents, to impeach Trump. Throughout the entire process of impeachment, Republicans have been consistent in their support of Trump, with Senators like Lindsey Graham and Mitch McConnell reiterating their support for Trump and that the entire process is unfair to the president. This is in addition to the fact that no Republicans in the House voted to begin the process of impeachment, while two Democrats voted against the measure, though three Republicans and one Democrat did not vote.
Not only does it seem that most Republicans in Congress are behind the President, but it seems those that vote for Republicans are behind Trump as well. Despite the President sitting at around a 44% approval rating, his approval with Republicans sits much higher, at around 85%. While it is possible that that number may dip in the coming months, it is unlikely to change enough to pressure Republicans in Congress to vote against the President.