As the U.S. House of Representatives is set to impeach President Donald Trump for the second time – just days before he leaves office – questions are being raised about what will happen next.
Here are some of the possible scenarios if the House, as expected, impeached Trump on Wednesday for instigating last week’s attack by his supporters on the U.S. Capitol as Congress confirmed Democrat Joe Biden’s victory in the election. presidential:
The usual process is for the Senate to hold a trial for a president who has been impeached by the House.
That’s what happened last year after Trump was impeached by the Democratic-controlled House for pressuring the leader of Ukraine to dig up political filth on Biden.
Trump was acquitted by the Republican-majority Senate.
This time, however, Trump has only one week left in the White House and Biden is due to be sworn in as the 46th President of the United States on January 20.
This lack of time has sparked debate and speculation over whether the Senate can hold a trial before Trump leaves office.
Recall the Senate early?
The Senate is on recess and is not expected to return until January 19.
Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said a trial cannot begin until Jan.20 – the day Trump is expected to step down.
Bringing the Senate back early, according to McConnell’s office, would require the unanimous consent of all 100 senators – an unlikely scenario.
According to the office of Senate Democratic Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a 2004 resolution allows the Senate to be brought back to emergency session with the consent of majority and minority leaders.
“There is nothing preventing the Senate from immediately seizing itself if Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell decides he wants to continue,” Democratic Representative James McGovern of Massachusetts, chairman of the House Rules Committee, said on Wednesday. .
Pelosi and McConnell
If Trump is impeached by the House, it is up to Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Speaker of the House, to decide when to send the impeachment article to the Senate.
She could send it out immediately once it’s passed on Wednesday or she could wait, as some Democrats have suggested, until Trump steps down and Biden is comfortably seated.
Once in the Senate, McConnell’s intentions are unclear.
The powerful Republican senator from Kentucky thwarted Trump’s latest Senate conviction attempt, managing to rally all Republican senators except Utah’s Mitt Romney to vote for acquittal.
But the New York Times reported on Wednesday that McConnell believed Trump had committed imprescriptible offenses and saw an opportunity to rid the Republican Party of the real estate mogul once and for all.
A two-thirds majority of the senators present is needed to convict the president, which means that if all are in the chamber, at least 17 Republicans should join Democrats in voting for the conviction.
If the Senate is unable to hold a trial before Trump leaves the White House on January 20, the question arises as to whether he can stand trial after he leaves office.
This has never happened before, and some constitutional scholars argue that a former president cannot be tried by the Senate.
The three previous presidential indictments – those of Trump and Presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton – occurred while the leaders were still in the White House.
Like Trump, Johnson – in 1868 – and Clinton – in 1998-99 – were indicted by the House but acquitted by the Senate.
But the House impeached and the Senate tried former senators and judges after they were no longer in office or on the bench.
One of the arguments put forward to bring Trump to justice even after his departure is that a conviction could prevent him from taking up federal office again.
Trump has expressed interest in running for president again in 2024, and a Senate simple majority vote could prevent him from running for the White House again.
(Except for the title, this story was not edited by The Bharat Express News staff and is posted Platforms.)