President Donald Trump ripped Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Friday for withholding the articles of impeachment from the Senate, stating that was engaged in a “quid pro quo” and suggesting that she should be impeached.
Trump’s tweet comes as Pelosi continues to hold the partisan articles of impeachment against Trump from going to the Senate because she is worried that the political trial would be biased in favor of the president.
“Nancy Pelosi is looking for a Quid Pro Quo with the Senate,” Trump tweeted. “Why aren’t we Impeaching her?”
Nancy Pelosi is looking for a Quid Pro Quo with the Senate. Why aren’t we Impeaching her?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 20, 2019
Following the Democrats’ vote on impeachment, Pelosi told reporters in reference to sending the articles of impeachment to the Senate, “So far we haven’t seen anything that looks fair to us. That would’ve been our intention, but we’ll see what happens over there.”
“Pelosi’s comments, which echo suggestions raised by other Democrats throughout the day, inject new uncertainty into the impeachment timetable and send the House and Senate lurching toward a potential institutional crisis,” Politico reported. “Though the House adopted two articles of impeachment charging Trump with abuse of power and obstruction of congressional investigations, it must pass a second resolution formally naming impeachment managers to present the case in the Senate. That second vehicle triggers the official transmission of articles to the Senate.”
Noah Feldman, one of the Democrats’ top impeachment witnesses against Trump, wrote in a Bloomberg News op-ed on Thursday that the Democrats had not, in fact, impeached Trump because impeachment is not a vote, it’s a process. Feldman wrote:
The Constitution doesn’t say how fast the articles must go to the Senate. Some modest delay is not inconsistent with the Constitution, or how both chambers usually work.
But an indefinite delay would pose a serious problem. Impeachment as contemplated by the Constitution does not consist merely of the vote by the House, but of the process of sending the articles to the Senate for trial. Both parts are necessary to make an impeachment under the Constitution: The House must actually send the articles and send managers to the Senate to prosecute the impeachment. And the Senate must actually hold a trial.
If the House does not communicate its impeachment to the Senate, it hasn’t actually impeached the president. If the articles are not transmitted, Trump could legitimately say that he wasn’t truly impeached at all.
Attorney General William Barr said in an interview with Fox News following the vote on impeachment that the Democrats were “trivializing” impeachment and using it as a “political tool.”
“As a general matter, I think we have to be careful about trivializing the process and they put in a hurdle of high crimes – of treason, bribery, and other high crimes,” Barr told Fox News’ Martha MacCallum on “The Story.”
The attorney general added, “The articles of impeachment here do not allege a violation of law and it looks as if it’s going to be along partisan lines – I think – I’m concerned about it being trivialized and used as a political tool.”