Dec 8, 2019

What to expect this week as Democrats begin drafting articles of impeachment

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Democrats will argue during tomorrow's impeachment hearing that no U.S. president in history, until Donald Trump, abused presidential powers to attack America's democracy and corrupt its elections.

Driving the news: Democrats plan to argue that Trump committed the following offenses that the founders "found alarming and most worthy of impeachment," per a Democratic aide working on the impeachment inquiry:

  • "Abuses of power through self-dealing."
  • "Betrayal of national security in the service of foreign interests."
  • "Corruption of our elections that undermine our democratic system."

What to expect: You'll hear opposing arguments from the Democratic and Republican counsels to the Judiciary Committee and the Intelligence Committee, followed by rounds of questioning from Judiciary Committee members.

Between the lines: Our reporting indicates that the Democrat-led hearings so far have not only failed to move Republicans toward impeachment. They have also had the effect of hardening and consolidating Republican support — in both the House and Senate — behind the president.

  • Nobody we've spoken to, from either party, thinks there's even a remote chance Trump gets convicted in a Senate trial.

Go deeper: Read the opposing arguments from Democrats and from Republicans.

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Report: Democrats to announce articles of impeachment Tuesday

President Trump speaks at the Israeli American Council National Summit on Dec. 7 in Hollywood, Florida. Photo: Noam Galai/WireImage

House Democrats worked into the night to finalize impeachment plans, but they're expected to unveil two articles against President Trump during a Tuesday morning news conference, the Washington Post first reported.

Why it matters: The charges were expected to focus on abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, according to multiple news outlets. If the House were to vote for impeachment, it'd set up a trial in the Republican-controlled Senate to decide whether to remove Trump from office. 

Go deeperArrowDec 10, 2019

House Judiciary Committee hears impeachment evidence

Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Pool/Getty Images

The House Judiciary Committee heard the evidence behind the impeachment inquiry on Monday in a marathon nine-and-a-half hour hearing.

Why it matters: The committee is likely only days away from drafting formal articles of impeachment against President Trump — and this hearing was one of House Democrats' last chances to summarize their case against the president to the public.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Dec 9, 2019

Top Judiciary Republican says Democrats are "making up impeachment" as they go

Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, accused House Democrats of "making up impeachment as [they] go" during his opening statement in Monday's hearing.

What he's saying: Collins criticized Democrats' impeachment procedure so far, bemoaning that Judiciary had only heard from law school professors and committee staff — as Republicans on the committee argue that they'd like to hear from House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.).

Go deeper: Live updates from today's evidentiary impeachment hearing