Trump news: House votes to send articles of impeachment against president for Senate hearing
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Congress voted 228-193 to send the two articles of impeachment against the president to the Senate with Ms Pelosi's chosen House prosecutors.
The vote was predictably along party lines, with 192 of the "no" votes coming from Republicans, joined by only one Democrat.
Ms Pelosi's appointment of the case managers followed the release a trove of damning new evidence detailing the Trump administration’s efforts to extort a political favour from Ukraine obtained from Lev Parnas, a business associate of Rudy Giuliani, which has already prompted ex-US ambassador Marie Yovanovitch to call for a new investigation as it appeared Mr Giuliani's cronies had spied on her in Kiev.
Democratic Congressman Jerry Nadler, who joins Adam Schiff and five other Democrats as part of the prosecution team headed to the Senate, said that if the Senate doesn't permit the introduction of all relevant witnesses and of all documents the House wants to introduce, "then the Senate is engaging in an unconstitutional and disgusting cover-up."
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says a trial will likely begin on 21 January.
The Senate might consider witnesses after opening statements are made, Mr McConnell has said.
As the House debated before a vote, the president signed a "phase one" trade deal with China as part of an apparent easing of tensions between Washington and Beijing after the two exchanged retaliatory tariffs last year.
His "landmark" deal followed last night's address to fans in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he advocated the looting of Syria’s oilfields (a war crime), suggested 36th president Lyndon Johnson is in hell and raved about the problem of inadequate water pressure in American dishwashers, sinks and showers on another eccentric night at the podium.
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"All of this new evidence confirms what we already know – the president and his associates pressured Ukrainian officials to announce investigations that would benefit the president politically," they wrote, adding that "there cannot be a full and fair trial in the Senate without the documents that President Trump is refusing to provide to Congress".
Trump spent much of his speech at the Panther Arena defending his decision to order the strike that killed top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani at Baghdad International Airport on 3 January, labelling the deceased the "world's No. 1 terrorist." The line came in response to intense criticism from Democrats who said the president should have consulted Congress before approving the drone strike and raised questions about whether Soleimani was really plotting an "imminent attack" on America's embassies, as the likes of secretary of state Mike Pompeo has claimed.
"The Democrats are outraged that we killed this terrorist monster, even though this monster was behind hundreds and hundreds of deaths," Trump told the crowd in downtown Milwaukee. He added that Soleimani was "the king of the roadside bomb. Great percentages of people don't have legs right now and arms because of this son of a bitch."
The president also said Democrats "are doing everything possible to disparage what we did with the hit on this monster" and that the other party "should be outraged by Soleimani's evil crimes, not the decision to end his wretched life."
He also took on the leading Democratic 2020 candidates directly, saying of Bernie Sanders: "Bernie and the radical left cannot protect your family, nor can they protect our country."
Trump also criticised Biden's tendency to mix up locations, including recently confusing Iran with Iraq. "When you do that you can't really recover," he said.
Winning back Wisconsin is a key part of Democrats' 2020 strategy - and one of the reasons the party chose Milwaukee to host its national convention in July. Trump won the state by fewer than 23,000 votes in 2016 and he is expected to make frequent visits in the coming months as he works to maintain his edge. The state's primary is on 7 April.
Vice president Mike Pence warmed up the rally crowd last night by likewise panning the Democratic candidates as too far left for the state. "You know, I heard they've got another debate tonight. If it's anything like the other ones, those people are going to be standing so far on the left I think that stage is going to tip over," Pence quipped.
But the most bizarre line of the evening came when Trump launched into an extended riff about his efforts to roll back energy- and water-saving regulations, panning energy-efficient light bulbs and low water flow dishwashers, showers and toilets, which he promised to replace.
Emails sent to advocacy group the Southern Poverty Law Center and reviewed by The Independent show Miller fretting over the possibility that the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrrivals (Daca) programme would lead a higher percentage of foreign-born workers.
"[The] Daca amnesty remains in effect, which provides illegal youth (one of the single strongest pull factors for entering and remaining illegally) with both work permits and generous free cash tax credits," Miller wrote to Breitbart editor Katie McHugh in 2015, while he was serving as the communications director for then-senator Jeff Sessions.
House speaker Nancy Pelosi has just announced that the impeachment managers handling the case for the prosecution against the president in the Senate will be:
- Adam Schiff
- Jerrold Nadler
- Jason Crow
The House will later hold its vote on resolutions confirming the managers, apportioning funding and sending the articles of impeachment through to the Senate, after which Pelosi will hold a signing ceremony at 5pm EST (10pm GMT) before the impeachment managers take part in the engrossment ceremony, marching across the Capitol to deliver those articles to the upper chamber.
The articles will then be read aloud in the Senate tomorrow.