-Blank NEWS Online (NIGERIA) –By Albert OGRAKA with Foreign Agency Reports
The 45th President of the United States of America, Donald Trump has been impeached for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.
US House of Representatives impeached Trump on both Articles of impeachment on Wednesday, December 18, 2019.
Meanwhile, Trump has described his impeachment as both illegal and unconstitutional.
He becomes the third President to be impeached by the US House.
White House says Trump is convenient that Senate will restore order.
Richard Nixon was first American President to be impeached while Bill Clinton was impeached over lying about an alleged extra marital affairs.
The House voted on two charges – that the president abused his power and that he had obstructed Congress.
Both votes fell along party lines with nearly all Democrats voting for the charges and all Republicans against.
As voting took place, President Trump was addressing a campaign rally.
He told the crowd in Battle Creek, Michigan: “While we’re creating jobs and fighting for Michigan, the radical left in Congress is consumed with envy and hatred and rage, you see what’s going on.”
The White House released a statement saying that the president was “confident that he will be fully exonerated” in a Senate trial.
At about 20:30 local time (01:30 GMT), the House called for votes on the two charges: first, abuse of power, stemming from Mr Trump’s alleged attempt to pressure Ukraine to announce investigations into his Democratic political rival, Joe Biden; and second, obstruction of Congress, because the president allegedly refused to co-operate with the impeachment inquiry, withholding documentary evidence and barring his key aides from giving evidence.
Democrats were reportedly instructed by Ms Nancy Pelosi to treat the process solemnly. She told reporters outside the chamber she was “sad” about the proceedings, and a number of Democrats reflected on their disappointment at being involved in impeachment proceedings.
Across the country in the 24 hours leading up to the vote, pro-impeachment protesters took to the streets. Hundreds of people gathered in Times Square in New York on Tuesday night, chanting: “Tell me who’s above the law? Nobody is above the law!”
The president had made an extraordinary intervention on the eve of Wednesday’s vote, penning an irate six-page letter to Ms Pelosi accusing her of declaring “open war on American democracy”.
In the letter, which was published by the White House, the president claimed he had been “deprived of basic Constitutional Due Process from the beginning of this impeachment scam”. He was in fact publicly invited by the Democratic chair of the House Judiciary Committee to give evidence, a move that would also have allowed his legal team to question witnesses, but he declined.
- Donald Trump becomes the third US president in history to be impeached
- The Democratic-led House voted in favour of two articles of impeachment – abuse of power and obstruction of Congress
- He was accused of trying to extract political favours from Ukraine by withholding military aid
- Addressing supporters at a rally in Michigan, Mr Trump said Democrats will be punished at the 2020 election
- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said it was “tragic” his “reckless actions” made this necessary. “He gave us no choice.”
- The next stage is a Senate trial in January, where he will probably be acquitted – as were predecessors Bill Clinton and Andrew Johnson