The House Judiciary Committee will take formal steps towards impeachment next week, according to CNN. The Committee will hold a vote on Wednesday, on a resolution laying out procedures that it will use for an impeachment into President Donald Trump.
CNN reported that the vote will “lay out the ground rules for conducting hearings now that the committee has publicly announced it is considering recommending articles of impeachment against Trump. It is expected to follow the precedent set in 1974 over the committee’s procedures during then-President Richard Nixon’s impeachment proceedings.”
The resolution is considered a “major step” towards formal impeachment proceedings, and will give Chairman Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) extra power to call hearings at various levels in connection with impeachment activities and investigations.
Objective reporting for the educated American.
Nadler already stated publicly in August that his committee–which is overwhelmingly controlled by Democrats–has already been involved in impeachment proceedings behind-the-scenes. This caused some confusion, since a formal vote had not been taken at the time.
According to a report in Politico, the language of the coming resolution is still being decided; it is likely, however, to include impeachment language. “There was discussion among some Democrats on Friday’s call about the strength of the language in the resolution, according to sources briefed on the call,” the outlet reported.
A source told Politico that the vote is meant to make the idea of impeachment seem more official to the public.
At this point, however, it is unclear if moving towards impeachment would help Democrats; in fact, there’s a good case to be made that it could end up backfiring on the Party moving into the 2020 election. While the Democrats’ far left-wing base would love to see impeachment proceedings begin against President Trump, moderate voters and Independents would find the move to be too harsh and alienating.
In fact, moving to impeach Trump could end up increasing his nationwide popularity. When former President Bill Clinton was impeached by the Republicans in the 1990s, the public felt sorry for him and his popularity rating ended up at its highest point; Clinton won his subsequent reelection bid by a landslide.
But not everyone agrees that impeachment would help Trump’s popularity rating.
Back in May, American University professor Allan Lichtman–who has correctly predicted the last nine presidential elections–said that he believes Trump will win re-election next year. However, he did caution that there’s a chance impeachment could end up causing him to lose.
Lichtman argued that the real damage from an impeachment inquiry comes from “public hearings” and “a public trial in the Senate in which House prosecutors present evidence, present documents, make opening and closing statements.”