From the Crimea to Washington, the dramatic unfolding of events as it happens in real time has continued to attract both startling remarks and baffling attention. Similar to what is attainable in a box office thriller, the melodramatic events currently playing out at the United States most treasured building calls for a cursory look with serious concern.
From been a reality TV showman to becoming the 45th president of the United States, Donald Trump has continuously hobnobs through scandals and controversies since his official assumption into office on January 20th 2017. From the sublime to the ridiculous president Trump alongside his henchmen has continue to stir the ship of states through unparalleled affinity for unethical conduct and unbridled disregard for standard and conventions. Little wonder why he is currently under the eye of the storm with an impeachment inquiry that may likely bring an abrupt end to his presidency.
It all started with an infamous call to the Ukrainian government on the 25th of July, 2019 requesting same to dig up dirt against former vice president and frontline candidate for the Democratic Party in the forthcoming 2020 General elections. Through her personal attorney and close associate Rudy Giuliani, president Trump pressured the Ukrainian government to investigate Hunter Biden, son of the former vice president who formerly held position as a non executive director at a Ukrainian energy company.
Threatening to withhold military aides alongside a quid pro quo arrangement deal with president Volodmyry Zelensky of Ukraine shows to a large extent the measure of seriousness and intents of the president of the United States in abusing the power of his office by requesting foreign assistant in defaming the image of a political opponent en-route the 2020 General elections. A flagrant abuse of his office and show of gross misdemeanor among several options of illegality became a premise for an impeachment inquiry most especially after the August 12th whistleblower evidence report showing a possible quid pro quo by the Trump administration.
With testimonies from star witnesses Kurt Volker, a former US special envoy for Ukraine negotiations’, Gordon Sondland, US Ambassador to the E.U., Bill Taylor, a former US ambassador to Ukraine, Tim Morrison, the Europe and Russia chief for the National security council, and David Hale, the undersecretary of state for political affairs, the impeachment inquiry committee has gathered enough momentum giving the House controlled democrats a premise for moving on with a formal impeachment articles alongside several proceedings.
While speaker Pelosi and Intelligence committee chairman Adam Schiff galzes the House to making this impeachment proceedings a reality, opinion polls seems a harder nut to crack if this process must gain a bi-partisan support. Though the goal is to impeach an elected official which in this case is the 45th president of the United States, the process must follow an acceptable statutory standard and conventions. Impeaching a president isn’t as easy as the word sounds but if there are enough evidence showing high crimes and misdemeanor according to the framers of the constitution, then the possibility exists.
For an impeachment to succeeds, the following conventions must be adhered to as a basis for ground legal standards;
· The House judicial committee holds hearings and, if necessary prepares articles of impeachment which is a formal indicative of the charges against an official.
· If a majority of the Committee votes to approve the prepared articles, the whole House debates and thereafter a vote is taken.
· If a majority of the Committee votes to impeach the official on any of the articles as itemize as charges count, then the official must stand trial in the Senate.
· For an impeachment to take place finally and for the official to be removed, two thirds of the Senate is required on vote for conviction. It is on this note that an elected official is removed only at the point of conviction. However, if the Senate so assume given the degree of high crimes and misdemeanor committed, they may decide to bar such person from holding any public office thereof.
It is worthy of note to state here categorically that prior to the Clinton’s investigation of whitewater, the House has begun impeachment proceedings against only 17 officials-one US senator, two presidents, one cabinet member, and 13 federal judges. Two of the 17 willfully resigned their office even before the House could vote for impeachment proceedings. Basically, of the impeached 15, only seven got convicted by the senate. All the convicts were federal judges while that of the proceedings against the senator was stopped on the premise that his office does not allow for impeachment. The Senate held the remaining six in acquittals.
In all the articles of impeachment that the House has drawn, no official has been charged with treason. The closest to a charge of treason was the case of a federal judge who was impeached and convicted for siding the south and taking a position as a confederate judge during the civil war. However, two elected officials were charged for bribery. The rest charges for all other officials fall under the category of high crimes and misdemeaor which obviously is an extension of a wide variety of undefined crime.
Impeachment from time immemorial results more from a
political undercurrent than any other smoke screen make-believe objective. However, according to the given specific grounds as stated in the constitution which includes treason, bribery, high crimes and misdemeanor, both the Senate and the House must state beyond every reasonable doubt that an elected official have fallen short of any of the listed grounds.
The Watergate investigation of the Nixon administration shortly after he won a landslide second term bid in 1972 into the white house is a good indicative of an impeachable offense. Richard Nixon was accused by the House Judicial Committee in 1974 based on three premises in their articles of impeachment. Nixon was charged for obstruction of justice, gross abuse of power. A third was his flagrant contempt to congress for failing to produce documents as requested by the committee. Nixon’s case was a weighty one needing no basic arguments. He resigned even before the articles of impeachment would be read out for a possible vote.
The public hearing of president Trump’s impeachment inquiry begins Wednesday 13th Nov and it will mark a decisive turning point in the process should things fall apart for the Trump men. The evidences are already weighty enough should key witnesses testifies to the affirmative affirming what is known already. On the other hand, one basic question that stems out remains thus; How possible will the president be convicted by a Republican controlled Senate?
Link To Article: https://youth-journal.org/impeachment-inquiry-will-president-trump-escape