What are Democrats’ articles of impeachment all about?

U.S. House Democrats have drafted two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump. House leaders are charging the president with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. They announced the articles of impeachment on Dec. 10, 2019. A full House impeachment vote could come before Christmas. If passed, the president would face a Senate trial in 2020, a presidential election year.

President Trump charged with abuse of power, obstruction of Congress

The two articles of impeachment announced by House Democrats on Tuesday charge the nation’s 45th president with high crimes and misdemeanors.

»MORE: Which U.S. presidents have faced impeachment?

The first article of impeachment charges President Trump with abuse of power.

Democrats allege Trump “solicited the interference of a foreign government, Ukraine, in the 2020 U.S. presidential election. He did so through a scheme or course of conduct that included soliciting the government of Ukraine to publicly announce investigations that would benefit his reelection, harm the election prospects of a political opponent, and influence the 2020 U.S. president election to his advantage.”

The “election prospects of a political opponent” refer to former Vice President Joe Biden, currently the front-runner in the still-crowded field of Democratic White House hopefuls.

The president “also sought to pressure the government of Ukraine to take these steps by conditioning official U.S. government acts of significant value to Ukraine on its public announcement of investigations.”

Read the articles of impeachment below:

Democrats argue the president “used the powers of his presidency in a manner that compromised the national security of the United States and undermined the integrity of the United States democratic process. He thus ignored and injured the interests of the nation.”

Impeachment was established in the U.S. Constitution as a way to accuse a president of a crime and then hold a trial to determine if guilty. The first step requires a U.S. House member to introduce an impeachment resolution. The House speaker directs the judiciary committee to hold a hearing to decide whether to put the full measure to a vote by the full chamber. A majority of the committee must approve the resolution. If approved, it moves to a full vote on the House floor. If a majority of the House vot

In the second article of impeachment, titled obstruction of Congress, Democrats charge Trump has defied House subpoenas as it has pursued its constitutional power of impeachment.

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“As part of this impeachment inquiry, the committees undertaking this investigation served subpoenas seeking document and testimony deemed vital to the inquiry from various executive branch agencies and offices,” the articles read. “President Trump directed executive branch agencies, offices and officials not to comply with those subpoenas.

“These actions were consistent with President Trump’s previous efforts to undermine U.S. government investigations into foreign interference in United States elections.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) announced the impeachment articles Tuesday.

Nadler’s Judiciary Committee is set to vote on the articles Thursday.

Democrats hold a solid majority in the House. If the House votes along party lines to impeach Trump, the president would then face trial in the U.S. Senate in a presidential election year.

Trump’s actual removal from office is problematic, however, because the Senate is controlled by Republicans and the GOP is rallying to support the president.

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