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Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photos via Getty Pool

After seven public hearings with 12 different witnesses, the impeachment inquiry is moving on to the next stage: a public report and a handoff to the Judiciary Committee.

What's next: House Intelligence Committee staffers have been drafting a report that they plan to deliver to the Judiciary Committee in the coming weeks that lays out their case for impeachment, two sources familiar with their plans tell Axios.

  • It will also lay out their recommendations on how to proceed.
  • As of Friday morning, it was still unclear when the report will be released.
  • Republican staffers are working on a report of their own, GOP aides say, and will likely release it once Democrats publish theirs.

What we're hearing: There is a desire by some Democratic members on the Intelligence committee to continue investigating the president — with regard to Ukraine and other areas of concerns — even after the inquiry is passed over to Judiciary.

  • "There was more on our plate before Ukraine," Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) told Axios. "The foreign influence into our national elections is real and it's compelling and it's frightening, so I don’t think we're going to be in a position to not oversee that kind of review moving forward."

Timing: Democratic members on the Intelligence Committee say they expect the impeachment inquiry to be handed off to Judiciary soon after Thanksgiving recess, if not immediately upon Congress' return.

  • "There haven't been any decisions made yet about next steps," a Democratic leadership aide said. "But those conversations will happen in the next few days."
  • The aide told Axios that the Judiciary Committee will at least hold a hearing addressing what they see as Trump's high crimes and misdemeanors, and that Chairman Jerry Nadler will have a significant role in the impeachment process.
  • In addition to serving on the Intelligence Committee, Democratic Reps. Eric Swalwell and Val Demings, as well as GOP Reps. Jim Jordan and John Ratcliffe, are also on the Judiciary Committee and are expected to play a lead role when the inquiry ultimately lands there.
  • There has also been discussion that some Intelligence Committee staffers — who have worked on impeachment for weeks — may be loaned to the Judiciary Committee to help expedite the proceedings.

House Democratic leadership is still hoping to wrap their role in the impeachment process by the end of 2019, but they are hesitant to lay out a distinct timeline in case key witnesses close to Trump — like his former national security advisor John Bolton — decide to comply.

  • Yes, but: Several Democratic members and their aides have made it clear they do not plan to wait for a court ruling forcing them to do so.
  • "I feel as though our work is almost done. Given the witnesses available to us," Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Tex.) said. "After this, we're all going to regroup as a committee and figure out if there are other witnesses that we have to call. But I don't suspect that unless some of those principal people agreed to come in," he added.
  • "The utility of [more hearings] has started to diminish — unless they're extraordinary witnesses with extraordinary testimony," said Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.).

Go deeper

Updated 19 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Smaller than expected "Justice for J6" rally met with large police presence

Police officers watch as demonstrators gather for the "Justice for J6" rally in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 18, 2021. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

A few hundred demonstrators were met by a heavy law enforcement presence on Saturday at the "Justice for J6" rally outside the fenced-off U.S. Capitol, AP reports.

The latest: About 400 to 450 people were inside the protest area, excluding law enforcement, U.S. Capitol Police said.

DHS to increase deportation flights to Haiti from Del Rio

Migrants walk across the Rio Grande River carrying supplies back to a makeshift encampment under the international bridge between Del Rio, Texas, and Acuña, Mexico. Officials are struggling to provide food, water, shelter and sanitation, forcing migrants to cross the Rio Grande several times per day for basic necessities. Photo: Jordan Vonderhaar via Getty Images

The Department of Homeland Security on Saturday announced plans to ramp up deportation flights to Haiti out of the small Texas border town Del Rio, starting as soon as Sunday.

Why it matters: Reports have emerged of more than 10,000 migrants, primarily from Haiti, crowded in a temporary camp under the international bridge in Del Rio. Hoping to find refuge in the United States, they've had to bear with filthy conditions and the scorching sun for days, per an NBC News affiliate.

4 hours ago - World

Pope Francis urges bishops to listen to survivors of sexual abuse

Pope Francis rides his Pope mobile through a crowd of pilgrims before holding an open-air mass on September 15, 2021 in Sastin, Slovakia. Photo: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Pope Francis on Saturday urged European bishops to listen to survivors of clergy sexual abuse, saying "these important discussions truly touch the future of the church," AP reports.

Driving the news: Francis spoke in a video message to Central and Eastern European bishops who are convening in Poland for a four-day child protection conference beginning on Sunday.