- The results of the vote prove great political divisions about the ongoing investigations.
- Trump responded to the vote by describing it as "The Greatest Witch Hunt In American History!"
- Tim Morrison, a top Trump adviser for Russia and Europe, announced his resignation just before he had to testify at the House.
The United States House of Representatives has voted to formally open the impeachment investigation against President Donald Trump, which will reveal to the public whether Trump abused his powers for his own political gain. The impeachment procedure is, therefore, entering a new phase. “Today, we are further down the path of our inquiry,” said Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
The resolution that has just been adopted, per Speaker Pelosi, was “to eliminate any doubt as to whether the Trump Administration may withhold documents, prevent witness testimony, disregard duly authorized subpoenas, or continue obstructing the House of Representatives.” Democrats also objected to Trump’s lawyers interfering in interrogations, particularly on the House Judiciary Committee. That committee will ultimately decide whether Trump will be charged.
The results of the vote, however, prove great political divisions about the ongoing investigations. None of the 194 Republicans voted for the resolution. Two Democrats also voted against, while 231 Democrats and independent Rep. Justin Amash (I-MI), voted in favor. Four members abstained or were absent.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) earlier this week opined that a decision by the Democrats to vote on the impeachment inquiry against the US president is a clear indication that the process was a botched one from the word go. “It’s been 34 days since Nancy Pelosi unilaterally declared her impeachment inquiry. Today’s backtracking is an admission that this process has been botched from the start. We will not legitimize the Schiff/Pelosi sham impeachment,” McCarthy tweeted immediately after news of the vote became public.
The Democratic Party started the investigation against Trump after the US President allegedly asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden, and his son, Hunter, during a telephone conversation. A whistleblower report was the reason for that first step in the impeachment procedure. Trump himself already responded to the vote by rubbishing it, and describing it as “The Greatest Witch Hunt In American History!”
Resignation of a Top Adviser
Tim Morrison, a top Trump adviser for Russia and Europe, announced his resignation just before he had to testify at the House of Representatives in the investigation of a possible impeachment of Trump. A senior administration official has revealed that Morrison, an official of the National Security Council, “has decided to pursue other opportunities.” The official, who elected to remain anonymous, added that Morrison had been toying with the idea of resigning from the administration for quite “some time.”
On Thursday, Morrison is scheduled to testify at the House, as part of the Democratic-led impeachment inquiry, because he was one of the staff members who listened to Trump’s telephone conversation with the President of Ukraine in July.