House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced on Wednesday the seven Democratic lawmakers who will be the managers to present the impeachment case against President Donald Trump in a Senate trial.
The impeachment managers include House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff of California, who will be the leader of the team, as well as House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler of New York, whose panel drafted the articles of impeachment, Fox News reported.
Also on the team are House Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries of New York, Rep. Jason Crow of Colorado, Rep. Val Demings of Florida, Rep. Sylvia Garcia of Texas and Rep. Zoe Lofgren of California.
Pelosi told reporters on Capitol Hill that the team was chosen based on their past experience in court room settings, according to The Hill.
“The emphasis is on litigators; the emphasis is on comfort level in the courtroom,” she said. “The emphasis is on making the strongest possible case to protect and defend our Constitution.”
Lofgren brings the most impeachment experience among those on the team, having served as a House Judiciary Committee staff member during former President Richard Nixon’s impeachment proceedings in 1974, as well as having been a member of the Judiciary Committee in 1998, and now a manager.
— The Hill (@thehill) January 15, 2020
The speaker tweeted the names of the managers and their legal backgrounds on Wednesday morning.
“Today, I have the privilege of naming the Managers of the impeachment trial of the President. #DefendOurDemocracy,” she wrote.
Pelosi spoke proudly about the House voting to impeach Trump, saying, “On Dec. 18th, the House of Representatives impeached the President of the United States — an impeachment that will last forever.”
“The president is not above the law. He will be held accountable. He already has been held accountable. He has been impeached and you can never erase that,” she said.
Trump responded to the naming of the managers and the impending Senate trial, tweeting, “Here we go again, another Con Job by the Do Nothing Democrats. All of this work was supposed to be done by the House, not the Senate!”
Here we go again, another Con Job by the Do Nothing Democrats. All of this work was supposed to be done by the House, not the Senate!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 15, 2020
The House voted Wednesday on a resolution calling for the two articles of impeachment to be transmitted to the Senate.
“At 5 p.m., Pelosi will formalize the resolution with an engrossment ceremony in an august, wood-paneled room adjacent to the House chamber,” The Hill reported.
“Immediately afterwards, the House managers will walk the articles physically across the Capitol to the Senate, where GOP leaders will be waiting to accept them,” according to the news outlet.
The trial is expected to start as early as Tuesday.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did not yield to Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s demands to commit to additional witnesses being called before the trial began.
Rather McConnell has stated the proceedings will follow the precedent set by the Clinton impeachment trial, when senators heard the opening statements by the impeachment managers and the president’s defense and then voted whether to proceed with the trial and what witnesses would be called.
Former federal prosecutor and Whitewater independent counsel Robert Ray told Fox News on Wednesday, “This is the third impeachment proceeding in the last 45 years, and it is unique in the sense that this is an entirely partisan effort by the House of Representatives.”
“That’s what’s significant about what has occurred here,” Ray added.
No House Republicans voted to impeach the president, while three Democrats chose to not back one or both the articles.
Ray also took the Democrats for task for their persistent demands for a fair trial, pointing out the accused, in this case Trump, not the impeachment managers, should be the focus what a fair proceeding should look like.
“How can you have a fair trial without an accusation of a crime, much less evidence of one?” Ray asked.
The Democrats’ impeachment articles accuse Trump of abuse of power by requesting Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to look into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden’s dealings in the Ukraine on a July 25 phone call and then delaying military aid being sent to Kyiv for a little less than two months.
The second article of impeachment alleges that Trump obstructed Congress by declining to allow certain members of his staff to testify and not complying with document requests made by Democratic lawmakers, citing executive privilege.
Trump has countered that he provided a transcript of the July conversation with Zelensky, which showed no quid pro quo of release of military aid for a Biden investigation.
Zelensky stated he felt no pressure to open an investigation and in fact Ukraine did not open one prior to the aid being released in September.
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