Recently there has been a plethora of “Trump is going to be impeached”. Some from the left, as in “we’re gonna impeach that %^@#%$$$” and some from the right as in “If you don’t send us money right now the left is gonna impeach Trump”
In fact, only four times in US history, has Congress held serious discussions of presidential impeachment:
1. Andrew Johnson was actually impeached when Congress became unhappy with the way he was dealing with some post-Civil War matters, but Johnson was acquitted in the Senate by one vote and remained in office.
2. Congress introduced a resolution to impeach John Tyler over state’s rights issues, but the resolution failed.
3. Congress was debating his impeachment over the Watergate break-in when President Richard Nixon resigned.
4. William J. Clinton was impeached by the House on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice in relationship to his affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Clinton was eventually acquitted by the Senate on a party-line vote.
The impeachment process plays out in Congress and requires critical votes in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. The House impeaches and the Senate convicts, (or not).
First, the House first decides if there are grounds to impeach the president, and if it does, the Senate holds a formal impeachment trial.
In the House of Representatives, the House Judiciary Committee decides whether or not to proceed with impeachment. If they do, the Chairman of the Judiciary Committee will propose a Resolution calling for the Judiciary Committee to begin a formal inquiry into the issue of impeachment.
Based on that inquiry, the Judiciary Committee will send a second Resolution, this one to the full House stating that impeachment is warranted and why (the Articles of Impeachment), or that impeachment is not called for. The Full House will then debate and vote on each Article of Impeachment. Should any one of the Articles of Impeachment be approved by a simple majority vote, the President will be “impeached.” However, being impeached is simply being charged with a crime. There still has to be a trial, which is where the US Senate comes in.
In the Senate, the Articles of Impeachment are received from the House. Then the Senate formulates rules and procedures for holding a trial.
When the trial is held, the President will be represented by his lawyers. A select group of House members, appointed by the Speaker of the House, will serve as “prosecutors.”
The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court (currently John G. Roberts) will preside with all 100 Senators acting as the jury.
The Senate will meet in private session to debate a verdict.
The Senate, in open session, will vote on a verdict. A 2/3 vote of the Senate will result in a conviction. (67 votes)
The Senate will then vote whether or not to remove the President from office. (51 votes)
The Senate may also vote (by 51 votes) to prohibit the President from holding any public office in the future.
To sum things up in a slightly different way:
First every democrat (17) on the Judiciary Committee and 4 Republicans must decide
Then every democrat and 43 republicans in the House decide “what crime
Then every democrat plus both independents plus 19 Republicans in the Senate must vote to convict.
Then then every democrat plus both independents plus Republicans must vote to remove him from office
R D I To impeach to convict
Judiciary Committee has 24 Republicans 17 Democrats. It takes 21 votes to make the charge
House has 239 Republicabns 193 Democrats. It takes 218 to formally impeach
Senate has 52 Republicans 46 Democrats 2 Independents (who always vote Democrat) 67 to convict.
It ain’t gonna happen.
Here is the House Judiciary Committee:
REPUBLICAN (Chair Goodlatte)
Bob Goodlatte Virginia-6 Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner Wisconsin-5 Rep. Lamar Smith Texas-21
Rep. Steve Chabot Ohio-1 Rep. Darrell Issa California-49 Rep. Steve King Iowa-4
Rep. Trent Franks Arizona-8 Rep. Louie Gohmert Texas-1 Rep. Jim Jordan Ohio-4
Rep. Ted Poe Texas-2 Rep. Jason Chaffetz Utah-3 Rep. Tom Marino Pennsylvania-10
Rep. Raúl Labrador Idaho-1 Rep. Blake Farenthold Texas-27 Rep. Trey Gowdy South Carolina-4
Rep. Doug Collins Georgia-9 Rep. Ron DeSantis Florida-6 Rep. Ken Buck Colorado-4
Rep. John Ratcliffe Texas-4 Rep. Mike Bishop Michigan-8 Rep. Martha Roby Alabama-02
Rep. Matt Gaetz Florida-01 Rep. Mike Johnson Louisiana-04 Rep. Andy Biggs Arizona-05
John Conyers Michigan-13 Rep. Jerry Nadler New York-10 Rep. Zoe Lofgren California-19
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee TX-18 Rep. Steve Cohen Tennessee-9 Rep. Hank Johnson Georgia-4
Rep. Ted Deutch Florida-22 Rep. Luis Gutierrez Illinois-4 Rep. Karen Bass California-37
Rep. Cedric Richmond LA-2 Rep. Hakeem Jeffries New York-8 Rep. David Cicilline Rhode I-1
Rep. Eric Swalwell California-15 Rep. Ted Lieu California-33 Rep. Jamie Raskin Maryland-08
Rep. Pramila Jayapal WASH-07 Rep. Brad Schneider Illinois-10
So, it’s not gonna happen.
No matter what the democrats cry and whine about
No matter what the snowflakes riot and pray about
No matter what the right-wing papers decry while they beg for donations.