U.S. President Donald Trump lashed out at Democrats on Saturday over his impeachment by the House and a delayed trial in the Senate.
In a string of tweets, Trump called the impeachment a partisan “hoax,” while claiming his innocence and criticizing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who initiated an inquiry in September 2019 that led to his impeachment.
“New polling shows that the totally partisan Impeachment Hoax is going nowhere. A vast majority want the Do Nothing Democrats to move on to other things now!” Trump wrote.
Trump made the remarks a day after Pelosi, who has withheld articles of Trump’s impeachment, announced a plan on Friday to deliver them to the Senate, a key step for the trial to kick off.
“I will be consulting with you at our Tuesday House Democratic Caucus meeting on how we proceed further,” Pelosi told her Democratic colleagues in a letter.
Pressure is building up on Pelosi, who is trying to give Democrats more leverage in setting rules for the trial in the Senate, where Republicans have a narrow majority.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has so far rejected Democrats’ proposals, as he has garnered enough votes to move forward with the trial.
The Democrat-led House impeached Trump last month for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, charges the White House has refuted.
In an anonymous complaint last summer, a whistle-blower raised concerns about the White House’s interactions with Ukraine, resulting in the Democrat-led impeachment inquiry against Trump.
The president was alleged to have pressed his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky, into launching investigations that could politically benefit him. Furthermore, the White House allegedly tried to cover it up.
According to the nation’s Constitution, the House shall have the sole power of impeachment, while the Senate shall have the sole power to try all impeachments.
Conviction can only happen in the Senate and requires at least two-thirds of its members, or 67 senators, to vote in favor after a trial. Currently, the Senate has 53 Republicans, 45 Democrats and two independents.
The timeline for the Senate trial mostly depends on the House’s actions next week.
Senators could be sworn in as soon as Thursday for the impeachment trial, according to CNN, citing Senate aides.
But the trial, with arguments on the floor, probably won’t begin until days after that. (Xinhua/NAN)