House Democrats emerged from a closed-door meeting Tuesday morning to finally announce the much-delayed vote on sending their articles of impeachment against President Trump — passed nearly a month ago without a single Republican vote — to the Senate. The announcement, which comes amid mounting pressure from both sides of the aisle, signals, as CNBC puts it, a “political defeat” for the Nancy Pelosi-led Democrats.
The big vote will take place Wednesday, though one particularly important detail has yet to be determined: who exactly from the House is going to be presenting the Democrats’ case against the duly elected president during the Senate trial.
At a press conference held after the Democrats’ meeting Tuesday morning, House Democratic Caucus Chair Hakeem Jeffries (NY) gave reporters the big news. “[House Speaker Nancy Pelosi] indicated that the articles of impeachment … will be transmitted to the Senate at some point tomorrow,” said Jeffries, as reported by CNBC.
“Wednesday’s House resolution is expected to have three functions: To transmit the articles of impeachment to the Senate, name the House members who will serve as managers of the impeachment trial, and fund the trial itself,” CNBC explains.
“Absent a last minute change of heart by McConnell, Wednesday’s delivery of the articles by the House to the Senate will represent a political defeat for Pelosi, the de facto architect of the impeachment process so far,” the outlet notes.
As for those managers, who will “effectively act as prosecutors in the president’s trial,” their identities are not yet been revealed, but Jeffries said Pelosi will be providing them before the vote.
Among those expected to be the House Democrats’ “prosecutors” are two obvious choices: House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), who led the House’s widely criticized impeachment inquiry, and House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), who oversaw the crafting of the Democrats’ two articles of impeachment against Trump.
The announcement comes as support for impeachment has flatlined, with some polls showing a decline in support, and as key Democrats began to turn on Pelosi, publicly criticizing her “delay” gambit. Among the critics of the move is high-ranking Democrat Sen. Dianne Feinstein (CA), who said last week, “If we’re going to do it, she should send them over. I don’t see what good delay does.”
While the Democrats dragged their heels on sending over the articles, they did accomplish one official act last week: As Trump announced that Iran was “standing down” after its attack on two Iraqi bases that resulted in no U.S. or Iraqi casualties and minimal damage, Pelosi led the charge to vote on a War Powers Resolution limiting the president’s ability to respond to Iranian aggression in the region.
Trump, meanwhile, has been using the Democrats’ focus on trying to censure him against them, repeatedly hammering them online in front of cameras. “The Democrats and the Fake News are trying to make terrorist Soleimani into a wonderful guy, only because I did what should have been done for 20 years,” Trump tweeted Monday morning. “Anything I do, whether it’s the economy, military, or anything else, will be scorned by the [Radical] Left, Do Nothing Democrats!”
This article has been expanded to include more context.