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tv   Impeachment Vote  CNN  December 18, 2019 5:00am-4:00pm PST

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paul, joe, thanks for being with us. >> it's a very special morning. cnn's special coverage of these impeachment hearings continues. wolf blitzer and jake tapper take over in washington. welcome to our viewers here in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer in washington with jake tapper. this is cnn's special live coverage of the house impeachment vote on this truly historic day. president donald j. trump is facing the harshest and rarest of rebukes by the united states house of representatives. he's about to become only the third leader of this country ever to be impeached for high crimes and misdemeanors. jake, when this day is over, president trump will have an indelible mark on history. >> that's true. not just a mark. a stain. this is only the second time in modern american history this has happened. this is a serious day, a solemn
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day, a traumatic day in many ways. in fact, when you think about the last time the country went through this during the clinton years in the late '90s, a big difference was back then you had a president who was contrite, apologetic and supported by the democratic party but they were saying what he did was wrong, it just wasn't impeachable. here, for the most part, we have a president who is defiant. he wrote a rather -- i don't know how to express it, rude and defiant letter to nancy pelosi yesterday, and you have a republican party that is saying that the president did nothing wrong for the most part. that means in my view at least, the partisan divide about this impeachment is worse than it was. we shouldn't belittle how traumatic this is. it's an ugly day. >> it certainly is. as you and i know from our previous experience, it doesn't
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happen very often. i want to go to dana bash up to capitol hill right now. dana, you're watching all of this unfold, and you have a special guest with you. someone who will be presiding over at least part of this historic day. >> that's right. the man who led the investigation into what led to this impeachment. thank you so much, and thank you, mr. chairman, for joining me. so just a couple of hours, this is going to happen a few steps from where we are. it's solemn. it's grave. we've heard all those words from you. what message, after all of this, do you want americans to take away from what they see on the floor. >> well, i'd like americans to recognize that the president betrayed their trust. abused the power of his office to help cheat in an election, the next election, and sacrifice our national security to do so. and that is not something that we can accept in the office of the presidency. and if we accept it in this president because some people share the same party with the president, then we're going to
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have to admit of a level of corruption in that office for all future presidents. and so there's a lot at stake here in what we do today both for today and for the future. so after this, it's going to go down this hallway over to the senate side. will you be a house manager presenting your case to the senate during the trial? >> well, that will be up to the speaker to decide. she has made no announcements of her thinking. >> have you heard from her? >> i'm not going -- >> i know you don't want to get ahead of her. >> we talked about it. it will be her decision. we talked about the issue of house managers, but that will be a judgment call for her to make, and that's why she is the speaker. >> speaking of the speaker, i'm sure you saw the multi-page letter that the president wrote to her yesterday saying a lot of things, including that what you are doing is declaring an open war on democracy with this impeachment vote. the speaker called it sick. what's your reaction?
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>> it is a long, angry rambling letter of someone who appears not well. and i'm not sure any other way to describe it. but, look, the president wants to think that the impeachment provision, which the founder put in the constitution is somehow unconstitutional. that makes no sense. it was a constitutional remedy meant for a president like him who put his personal interests over that of the nation. this president believes he is the staircte, that he can do no wrong, under article two he can do anything he wants. well, he can't. he's not a king. he's not our ruler. he's an elected president who can be removed for abusing his power, and that he has done. >> on that note, the president in the oval office attacked you directly. he was sitting next to the president of guatemala and lamented you can't be prosecuted for telling what you call parody of the july 25th phone call here's what he said. in guatemala, they handle things much tougher than that.
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is that a threat? >> i think that's what he intended it to be. this is a president, after all, who has said of people who blow the whistle on him that they're traitors and spies and should be treated as traitors and spies used to be treated. we used to execute traitors and spies. anyone who stands up to him -- >> do you think jail is really what he meant? >> no, i think the undertone is very much a reference to guatemala's violent history. but look, he's not going to intimidate me, and thankfully, we have courageous public servant comes and testify who were not intimidated by him either. they did their constitutional duty. i'm going to do mine. i took an oath as well, and -- >> i'm sorry, when you say violent history, can you expand on what you mean? how did you take what the president said as a potential call to violence?
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>> i think it was deliberately designed to be a threat. and this is the president's modus operandi. i'm not the first person he made a threat about, i won't be the last. this is precisely the kind of conduct that americans should not accept in the oval office. he has so debased that office with his threats and his temper tantrums but more to the point, he has sacrificed our national security by withholding military aid from an ally at war so that he could get help in cheating in the next election. that's what brings us to this day. >> so there was a report in "the washington post" that you sent a letter to vice president mike pence. and you want to declassify some of the testimony from his aides. and "the post" reports that your letter says there are profound questions raised about the vice president's knowledge of the president's actions in ukraine. do you have evidence that the vice president did something that was untoward or even
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inappropriate or illegal? >> mr. sondland testified that he informed the vice president at that meeting in warsaw that the aid was being withheld, that the president wanted these investigations and that the two were tied. and he got no visible reaction from the vice president. not a, you don't know what you're talking about, that couldn't possibly be, what does this mean. none of that. just a silent acknowledgment, if you will. this issue goes to the vice president's knowledge of this scheme. it should be declassified. it has nothing classified in it. it is not appropriate to classify something because it will conceal material that's either embarrassing or incriminating. if the president thinks his call is perfect, he should release his call and release this classified submission. >> we've seen the chairman release classified information before. if he doesn't say yes, will you do it anyway? >> that is a process that has been abused in the past. i would like to see the
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intelligence community declassify this if the vice president will not. >> one of the questions going forward is whether or not the house will hold the articles of impeachment until the senate gets its act together on what a trial will look like. is that a good strategy? >> that will be a decision for the speaker if and when to transmit the articles should they pass as we presume that they will today. i have to say i'm deeply concerned by the comments from mitch mcconnell that he had -- does not intend to be impartial. that he does not want to hear witnesses. does not want to see documents. he's not interested in finding out the truth. now the evidence is already overwhelming but he's afraid it will become even more overwhelming. >> is it a good idea to hold on to the articles here until maybe he can be convinced otherwise? >> well, i hope he will engage in a good faith negotiation with senator schumer about the nature of the trial so that the
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american people get to hear from these witnesses. the overwhelming majority want to hear from bolden and mulvaney. they want documents from the state department to be -- >> are holding the articles potential point of leverage for you? >> well, that will be a decision for the leadership. >> what do you think strategically. could it be? >> i don't know the answer. but i do know this. there are witnesses that have knowledge. they are witnesses like john bolton that the senate should hear from. there are documents, many of them deeply incriminating that should be released by the state department and office of management and budget and the senators of both parties should want that evidence to come to light. if they're doing their constitutional duty, they should want that evidence to come to light. >> so we -- speaking of coming to light, we have now in the last week seen that there are big problems in the fisa courts, the court that approves secret spying or surveillance, whatever you want to call it. will you, as chairman of the intelligence committee start to
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work on reforming that very important court? >> yes. and we'll have an opportunity to do so. the renewals of the fisa legislation. but also given the decision by the fbi director, which i think is absolutely not only appropriate but necessary to implement the recommendations of the inspector general so there are real reforms. the letter calls on the fbi and the department of justice to reform the process so that when there are proceedings like this in the future, the court can have confidence that it's getting the full information. >> you have been one of the faces of this whole process. given that, how do you want history, which is going to be made today, to remember you and how you handled yourself and the things you said and did? >> i think not so much from the perspective of history but from the perspective of when the day comes i have grandkids and they
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want to know what did grandfather do when he was in the congress. i want them to be proud of what i did and when we had a deeply unethical man running the country, that their grandfather stood up to him. and i feel privileged only in one respect during this dark time that i'm in a position i can make a difference when i think our democracy is deeply at risk. >> mr. chairman, thank you for your time this morning. >> i really appreciate it. wolf and jake, back to you. >> thanks, dana and to the intelligence chairman. this moment, abuse of power, obstruction of congress. we'll hear a lot about high crimes and misdemeanors. >> and also what we just heard from the chairman of the intelligence committee, a little suspen suspense. generally today we know what's going to happen. democrats appear to have the votes to impeach the president. but he refused to answer the question or demured as to -- asked whether or not nancy pelosi wants the articles of impeachment passed, whether
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she'd send them over to the senate where it looks like they'll die a quick death. he did not say whether she would. there's been talk among democrats about not sending them over because mitch mcconnell and others, republicans there have basically said they're not going to be impartial jurors. >> and they don't want any witnesses either. all right. we're standing by for the start of these truly momentous impeachment proceedings in the house of representatives and a very unusual and dramatic gathering of house democrats on the floor. our special coverage continues in a moment. i feel like i'm losing my identity.
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we're back with our special coverage. manu raju is up on capitol hill. i understand you are getting new information on how this is about to unfold? >> yeah. republicans are weighing how far to take their objections on the floor of the house today in terms of delaying that final vote that is expected this
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evening on two counts. republicans can see there's nothing they can do to prevent the president from getting impeached. they are weighing how far to go in making their objections known. one of the things they can do is mount a number of procedural objections through the course of the day. move to adjourn the proceedings in the house and ultimately delay things for some time or potentially for hours. what i'm told is that republicans are planning to limit the number of procedural objections at the moment, but we can expect the procedural objections to be made at the top when the house rekconvenes at 9:00 a.m. expect them to make their first procedural objection to mount their frustrations about how the process has unfolded. on the democratic side they are setting the tone differently. nancy pelosi has called all of her members to come to the house floor when the chamber convenes at 9:00 a.m., which is unusual. typically that does not happen when the chamber convenes on a day like today, on wednesday morning. the speaker would gather behind closed doors, discuss the
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legislative business at issue, but the focus being a historic and momentous day, pelosi wants to set a somber and serious tone with her members. bring them all to the floor. but expect the intensity to begin right off the start when republicans make their frustration known when the chamber convenes within an hour. >> that's going to be so, so powerful and dramatic. this president's legacy is clearly very sensitive to the stain that today is going to be on that legacy. >> he likes to say this helps him, that this is just revealing the -- how partisan the democrats are. but the truth is and you can tell this from the six-page letter he wrote speaker pelosi, he hates this. he hates the fact that his presidency will forever be known with a big black checkmark next to it as one of only three u.s. presidents, two in modern days, to have been impeached by the house of representatives. >> this is a president who once said this is impeachment light. he was talking to supporters at
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a rally and not a big deal, impeachment light. look at the things they're using against me. but when you look at this letter yesterday, this is a president who doesn't think this is impeachment light at all. he understands what a stain it is. it's also clear now he has given in to mitch mcconnell who says no witnesses. the president, remember, wanted witnesses. he wanted to be defended. >> he wanted it to be a spectacle. >> yeah. he wanted it to be a great show. and the letter yesterday, i think, is his version of witnesses, i.e., his side of the story and his insults about people who would vote to impeach, you know, calling them everything except un-american and maybe he even did that. >> he's given in for now. let's see if the president stays in that spot. mitch mcconnell has told him the math is in your favor. don't do anything to mess with the math. we'll see if the president stays in that spot. it's important about the speaker wanting to be there when the house comes into session. it's a momentous day. to have all the democrats on the
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floor. that's a show of force by nancy pelosi. this is very personal like it was newt gingrich versus bill clinton, until newt was forced out. that's a reminder of the unpredictability. but nancy pelosi is the face of the democratic party. she wants all the members on the floor. she has the advantage in the sense the trump campaign, the joint committee with the republican national committee, republican superpacs the past month have spent well in excess of $10 million trying to sway these trump district democrats to vote against impeachment. it hasn't happened. given the last 24 hours, they've all come home for the democrats. nancy pelosi is winning the politics of the moment. we'll see how it plays out. >> it's remarkable when you look at this announcement. about 30 democrats from these congressional districts trump won in 2016, and overwhelmingly, they are going to support the articles of impeachment, even in districts that have a ten-point republican advantage, 14-point republican advantage. they are really making a show of being defiant on their own terms.
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>> that's right. and we'll see that today on the house floor as john alluded to. the president never thought this day would happen, right? in some ways, nancy pelosi didn't think this day would happen either. she was reluctant to get here, but it was those house members that were able to flip those districts. those trump districts that were a deciding factor. they looked at the evidence they had before them. of course, it impeachment hearing went on and they wanted to draw that line in the sand and send a signal to this president and future presidents that this was unacceptable behavior. that you couldn't ask a foreign power to interfere in your re-election. the president must wake up today with knots in his stomach. we saw i think in that letter how he was feeling. the rage, the sense of victimization, the anger. he knows it's a stain on his record. he likes to think of himself in superlatives. the this, this, the biggest this and now he's a part of this very small group of presidents who have been impeached.
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>> i remember when it wasn't that long ago when nancy pelosi said, you know, donald trump is not worth it. he's not worth impeaching. and adam schiff felt the same way. they were on the same page. look at the turn they've taken and the turn those democrats and those 31 trump districts have taken. they didn't want impeachment. their leaders didn't want impeachment. then the ukraine story broke and she said this is something we need to pay attention to because this is about something larger than donald trump. it's about the constitution. >> although even though the articles of impeachment are focused on this ukraine story. you can't look at the ukraine story or this impeachment in a vacuum. this is for these house democrats part of a piece. i think that if president trump had been a more conventional president and then ukraine happened, i don't know that we would be doing this today covering this impeachment. this is about the fact, even if it's not in the articles of
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impeachment that trump in 2016 invited russian election interference and then after the whole russia investigation and mueller testified, the day after mueller's testimony, president trump then had this phone call with the ukrainian president and asked him to investigate the bidens. this is about a pattern and feeling like this is the straw that broke the camel's back. >> professor jeffrey engel is with us, the presidential historian. professor, how harshly will history judge this president following this day? >> there's no doubt he's completely rewritten the first sentence and surely the first paragraph of whatever chapter in history books are about president trump. we're not going to talk about president trump without mentioning that he was only the third president formally impeached by the house of representatives. and it strikes me we've only had this three times but this one is different in a variety of ways. this is one of the first where the president is defiantly saying he didn't do what he's
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accused of. andrew johnson boasted he did what he did. just boasted what the congress has impeached him for. bill clinton was contrite and mentioned he was sorry for what he did and it wasn't over whether he did something right or wrong. everybody knew he had lied. the debate was whether or not that was impeachable. this is the first time we're seeing a president if you will, push back, actively argue that what he did was not only right, but not wrong. that's really remarkable. >> as president trump faces impeachment, he's lashing out. it's not sitting well with some of his fellow republicans. we'll have much more of our special impeachment coverage just ahead.
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let's go to our chief white house correspondent jim acosta. i understand you're getting more information to the reaction to the six-page letter the president released last night? >> some reaction on capitol hill. talked to an official late last night that said the reaction among some gop senators was not good in response to the six-page letter from the president to the house speaker nancy pelosi. in the words of this republican official, of course not, was how this person responded to whether or not folks up on capitol hill on the republican side in the senate liked what they read in that letter. i talked to some officials who said, listen, if you want to understand where the president's head is right now, read this letter. and according to a source very close to the president, the president essentially needed to
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get this letter off his chest. get these feelings off of his chest. he's still getting things off his chest. he's just fired off a tweet that appears to reprise part of that letter. if we have it we can put it up on screen. it's essentially going back to the president's grievances about what's happening today. can you believe that i will be impeached today by the radical left? do nothing democrats and i did nothing wrong. a terrible thing. read the transcripts. this should never happen to another president again. say a prayer. that part about saying a prayer. he may be asking people on the republican side or perhaps all americans to pray for him, but it also may be a reference to what he said yesterday in that scathing letter to pelosi when he seemed to mock the very notion that she would be praying for him. of course she said last week that she prays for the president all of the time. one thing we should mention, wolf, the president said yesterday to me and other reporters in the oval office that he won't be watching the proceedings today, but a senior white house official said the president will be briefed throughout the day on how things are going on inside the house. so he is going to be keeping
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tabs on all of this. no doubt about it for a president who has had his back against the wall multiple times over the last three years and throughout the course of the 2016 campaign, this feels like a very different moment over here at the white house. this is a president as we saw yesterday in the oval office who is almost breathing fire at this point. he is outraged over this impeachment. he sees it as an injustice, and i suspect we're going to see more of those frustrations vented throughout the day. >> we certainly will. jake, it's interesting you and i -- all of us have now gone through this letter several times. it shows how angry he is in what's going on. >> yeah, it's like a 60-tweet thread put in a white house stationery. it's full of falsehoods and lies and typical attacks. one thing we should note about the tweet that jim just read from, it says if you look at the transcri transcripts, read the transcripts, i did nothing wrong. the reason we're here is because
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members of the trump administration were so alarmed at the phone call and it's not just about the phone call, this multi-month campaign by gordon sondland and rudy giuliani and others to get the ukrainians to announce these investigations, political investigations that would help president trump. so he can have his opinion, obviously, about his phone call and think it shows that he did nothing wrong. the rough transcripts that's out there but, in fact, that phone call alarms so many members of his own administration that that's why we are at the brink of his becoming only the third president in american history to be impeached. >> it's an important point. we'll be speaking with the highest ranking republican in the house of representatives. that's coming up. also a key democrat who has a very, very difficult decision to make today. we'll be right back. maria ramirez?
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let's go to dana bash on capitol hill. >> thank you, mr. leader, for joining me. first question is about the president.
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you're in constant contact with him. you're very close with him. that letter yesterday. have you talked to him about that letter and what he was thinking? >> i was with him yesterday at the white house. talked to him a little about that. i really talked to him about all the other things we still have to get done. he's going through impeachment at this moment. if you read through the letter, there are things in the letter said in hearings. jonathan turley, a constitutional scholar and a democrat who did not vote for the president when he came before the hearing of the committee he said the only abuse if the democrats move forward would be on the democrats. and that's part of what's on that letter. >> so that's true. but the rest of the letter it was like a series of trump tweets on white house stationery. as a leader, as a person who respects the institution, did that bother you? >> what bothered me is you're moving through with impeachment.impeachment. what bothered me is demeaning of impeachment. what alexander hamilton feared the most that a political party
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would use this for their own political gain, not for the rule of law. that's what we're facing today. is this going to be the new norm. even today as we move forward and listen to some democrats say if it doesn't pass the senate we'll come back and impeach him again. when you have more than 70 members who vote for impeachment before this even goes forward. >> do you think he bears any responsibility? did he do anything wrong with that phone call, with the actions that we saw testified to by a number of nonpartisan, career people. do you feel -- >> he did nothing that rises to the level of impeachment. >> but he did some things that trouble you? >> look, i'm a member of congress. the only vote i have before me today is about impeachment. and the idea that when you sit back and listen to where we are today, the speaker has just admitted last week she's been trying to impeach him for 2 1/2 years. the chairman of the judiciary -- >> i think what she meant is there were people who were pressuring her. >> she said for 2 1/2 years. >> chairman nadler, read "the
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new york times." he campaigned for the chairmanship. he campaigned for the chairmanship with his own members saying he was for impeachment. congresswoman talib, on the first day she was sworn into office, she said she was going to impeach him. >> i hear you, but on the rhetoric on the left. i just want to follow up on something that you just said. or didn't say. did the president do anything wrong? >> the president -- >> take away impeachment. >> he did nothing to be impeached. >> did he do anything that bothered you? >> that's not the question. there's people i work with every day. the speaker does something that bothers me. members of my own congress do something that bothers me. you want to demean impeachment that low? remember what you're asking when you're impeaching someone. you are removing the duly elected individual of the united states of america simply because he made you upset? simply because you disagreed with something? this president campaigned on the idea that he would be different. that he would drain this swamp. so it upset somebody?
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was anybody in there that they had a hearing that they did not give him due process even though they got to pick who the witnesses snrp dowitness s were? does it upset you that a fisa judge just yesterday wanted to know when the fbi spied on him while running for office? does it upset you the intel committee chair who they took this impeachment chair actually defended that fisa court to the -- >> i hear what you're saying but you don't want to say that it upsets you? >> it upsets me that we'd be here today because someone is upset. >> given everything you just said, will you use the tactics that you have at your disposal to delay what happens on the house floor today? what will we cy ssee -- >> what tactics do i have? >> just in terms of gumming up the works. are you going to try to do that? >> did we do that at all in the hearings we didn't have any fairness in? we played by the facts.
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what's interesting to me inside rules committee yesterday, the congressman raskin who they had lay out the case for them, two days before the president was sworn into office, you know what he said. he was at a rally talking about impeaching the president. if the truth comes forward, every single -- they want to impeach this president because they cannot beat him in an election. that is wrong. >> will you lose even one republican in these votes? >> no. no. remember what the speaker pelosi said. and i agreed with her in march. she said impeachment was so divisive to this nation that it had to be overwhelming. there had to be compelling and bipartisan. even by the speaker's own criteria and requirements she's not met one of those but she's moving forward because she had a timeline. does it upset you when this all started with adam schiff who said he was concerned the administration would try to block a whistle-blower from testifying that the whistle-blower has not
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testified? does it concern you that adam schiff said he did not know who this whistle-blower was but his staff met with him? does it concern you that adam schiff defended the fisa court and said nothing wrong when we have a new judge that says there is. >> i have to go back to the studio. i appreciate you taking the time to talk. >> i appreciate you. >> wolf and jake. >> please thank kevin mccarthy for us. jake, you have a guest. >> with us right now is freshma michigan. one of the 30 house democrats that won districts trump represented in 2016. i want to ask about your important vote but first your reaction to what you just heard there from the minority leader. >> two things really struck me. one, he just said we're doing this because we're upset and to me, that's -- it's insulting. i mean, if i were upset, i get upset every day about something. but for me, this is a very different thing. the president of the united states reached out to a foreign
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leader and asked for help against a political rival for personal gain. not for the interest of the country. that's not something that just makes us upset. that's a precedent that cannot be allowed to move forward because today it's a democratic or republican president asking for help on an investigation of a rival. tomorrow it's a republican president asking for a cyberattack. so it's demeaning when he says well people are upset about it. i want him to be upset about that, right? the president of the united states did that. and then secondly, honestly, i thought about his grandkids one day watching that video. and i don't think that history is going to reflect well on people who put defending someone in their party ahead of what they know the founding fathers said very explicitly they were worried about which is foreign influence in our political process. >> the house minority leader refused to answer the question that dana tried several times to get him to answer. i get you don't think this is impeachable, minority leader mccarthy, but does it upset you
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at all? was it wrong? he just would not answer the question. >> and i think when it comes to an issue as big as this, you just got to kind of call a spade a spade. i understand that he's going to protect the president. he's being clear about that and has gotten folks in lockstep. i'd like a little integrity there. i don't like what he did. it's not right. i don't like the story it tells. something to reflect on the fact that inviting a foreign anything into our political process is just not right. and i just -- i'm sad. and i think about having to explain this years later with the heiindsight of history and it's not going to be a positive view for them. >> president trump won your congressional district by -- >> seven points. >> this vote could be a reason why your congressional career, theoretically ends. >> yeah. >> have you made peace with that? >> i have. i get told this all the time.
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i just think there has to be a time where things are beyond politics. and to be honest, i had never planned on running. i'm a former cia officer and pentagon official. this was never in my plan. and guess what? no one dies if i don't come back in 2020, but i have to be able to walk out of that job being able to look in the mirror. and that is more important to me than compromising my integrity just to be re-elected. i'm just not going to do that. >> you work across the aisle a lot by nature and also by virtue of your district being a swing district. are you hearing anything from house republicans about this vote and their feelings being other than in lock step with president trump? >> well, i mean, listen, i've had colleagues, republican colleagues that i woirrk with closely and want to talk through their logic on why they are voting no and understand why i'm voting yes.
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there's certainly conversations going on. to be honest, there's still bipartisan work going on. i'm going back to the office today and just get in deep on the usmca. the vote on the next agreement after nafta. >> the trade deal. >> that's a huge deal for my state, for michigan. that's a huge, important moment, and republicans and democrats have negotiated that. so i think sometimes people think no bipartisan work is going on. despite the tension that's going on around impeachment, we are still working where we overlap and that's the goal. the goal is not to be a country where we can't agree and can't compromise. the goal is to get back to a healthier place where we can work on interests that overlap. >> so why are you voting to impeach president trump? why do you think he abused power? why do you think he obstructed congress? >> for me, i did what i always do as a cia analyst. what i was trained to do was i took over my desk. i put every report out there. i killed a lot of trees by printing everything out. i went back to the base
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documents, our founding documents, and then i went back for historical reference to the clinton impeachment documents and nixon impeachment documents, and i looked at the full body of information. and that full body spoke to two things. one, that the president, as he and his lawyer acknowledged back in september, they went to a foreign leader and asked for an investigation on a rival. not for the gain of the united states, but for his personal gain. the body of information supports that firsthand and secondhand accounts, and then obstruction of congress. the constitution. i was at the archives for a holiday party by chance last week. a bipartisan holiday party. and it was at the national archives which houses the constitution. and it's very hard to read the faint writing, but it gives the soul power of impeachment to the house of representatives. it's clear on that. and you may not like it, but his refusal to answer a subpoena, to send a witness, his actual guidance to the executive branch was no one participates. he doesn't get to make that decision, even if he doesn't
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like it. our founding fathers made it very clear in the constitution so that's why i'm also voting yes on obstruction of congress. >> congresswoman elisa slotkin, democrat of michigan, thank you for being here on this solemn and sober day. we appreciate it. if i don't see you, happy hanukkah. >> thank you. >> and coming up, the house is about to begin the final steps to impeach president trump. we're about to go live to the house floor where a show of strength by democrats as history unfolds. ( ♪ )
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democracy democratically elected by the people of the united states, is officially telling the world today, we think president trump abused his office. we think he is not fit to be president. we think he should no longer be president. this isn't just rhetoric or some congresswoman at an inaugural festivity saying they're going to impeach president trump. this is a statement by a majority of the house of representatives. it is traumatic. it is sober. it is upsetting in a lot of ways. and it is as strong a rebuke as our founding fathers gave to the united states. >> certainly is. and as we say, it will be historic. anderson cooper is with us as well. anderson, this a moment that the president is dreading. >> it certainly is and is quite angry about as we saw in the -- well, i wouldn't say surprising letter he sent to nancy pelosi, but interesting letter nonetheless. jeff toobin here with the whole
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group. what are you expecting today? just again, in terms of the historic nature of this, it is extraordinary. >> well, it is extraordinary. and as we, you know, we're saying very often, it's the third time that a president is going to be impeached. but it's even more historic than that because it's the first time the voters will have a chance to pass judgment on an impeachment. all the other impeachments that presidents have -- >> bill clinton, already his second term. >> and nixon, the house judiciary committee voted to impeach him and then he resigned. but he was in his second term and andrew johnson, it was before presidents had term limits, but, you know, it adds an element to this -- to the occasion today that is completely unprecedented because everybody is looking really at two things here. the impeachment itself, but what it means for the election next year. and i want to give you a ringing -- i don't know. i don't know what it means.
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>> that is something that democrats are obviously very well aware. elisa slotkin and others have talked about table-top issues they want to get back to as quickly as possible. they say they've already been doing that, but in terms of the public's consciousness. >> it's one of the reasons that nancy pelosi waited a long time and was really dragging her heels until the whistle-blower report came out. they are worried about the political consequences of this. but what one former white house official said to me last night is they were reading the letter to nancy pelosi and pointed out the president likes to be the victim in all of this. but he's not the victim. this is a pattern of conduct going back to 2016. russia, you know, if you're listening. and i think it's important to remember today that one of the
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reasons we're here is because of the whistle-blower, because of the officials who came out and testified against the directive of the white house. and you have to wonder what the debate would be like today and what the votes would be like today if john bolton had testified, if mulvaney had testified, and if all of those documents had been released. >> you know, to your point about the election. this is the core of impeachment. 2016, russia interfered in the election. the core of the allegation here is that the sitting u.s. president illicitted foreign interference by pressuring ukraine to investigate his political opponent. whether you believe that or not, that's the core of the allegation here. what's truly remarkable to me is even as the country is hurdling towards impeachment, that illicitation of foreign interference is continuing right before our eyes. the president's personal attorney went to ukraine, met with not very trustworthy individuals there.
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pro-russian members of parliament. one who trained with the kgb, to dig up more dirt from a foreign source on a political opponent. will this country have a bipartisan rejection of that kind of behavior? no, it won't be. it will be a purely party line vote and that has direct implications for an election under way. just 11 months from today. it's happening before our eyes. and i think that's a truly remarkable thing for americans to witness. >> to jim's point, i think one of the things that really drove so many democrats over the edge here was, obviously, the whistle-blower report looking at the notes from this call. but the notion that we need to protect our next election. and president trump has shown a pattern of a willingness to not only accept but also pursue information about his political opponents from foreign adversaries. it's important to remind people that it wasn't just russia. it wasn't just ukraine but he also made that pronouncement about china from the white house lawn. who knows what we don't know.
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that's what drove many national security democrats over the edge. >> republicans are saying, and we heard from kevin mccarthy just a short time ago talking to dana bash, saying democrats have been planning impeachment from the get-go. >> the facts don't play that out. there were many democrats who i met with and saw and i was one of them, not elected, who felt impeachment wasn't the right path around the mueller report. but things changed when we saw the whistle-blower report, when we saw the notes from the ukraine call and it was so clear what the president of the united states was doing, was willing to do, was actively doing. and you know, this is a moment in history and when the history books look back, when my children are being taught this in their classes, they will see quite a contrast on the politics of today because you have about a dozen democrats. elis elissa slotkin is one of them. they're putting their political future at risk because they're doing what's right. what they think their constitutional duty is. on the other side we don't expect to have a single
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republican stand up and say it isn't okay for the profit the united states to abuse his power. and that's quite jarring. >> well, i think -- they have been plotting impeachment since before he was ever sworn in. there was an article in vanity fair in 2016 where several democratic senators were laying traps was the phrase they used to set up an impeachment of the president. >> that was right after the beto o'rourke cover. >> right. >> one of them was elizabeth warren and she was, you know, part of this group. now she's running for president. so republicans have never trusted democrats were actually acting in good faith because of what they saw even before the president was sworn in. i agree with you. we're living in an historic moment here and it's hard not to feel that today. but it's not often you live through one of those moments where you know where it's going to turn out. we know how the vote today is anything to turn out. and to your point, how the american people are going to absorb it. we've now reached the ultimate tribalism. democrats don't believe a darn thing trump said.
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republicans don't believe a darn thing democrats say and we'll survive that tribalism tonight and survive it when he's acquitted in the senate. what happens when we wake up and there's an emergency or a crisis and these two american political silos which don't interact anymore except to clash would be expected to combine and tell us the truth and say, we're going to preserve the country in this way? to me, knowing how this historic moment is going to turn out gives me some comfort but what gives me no comfort is whether they could combine efforts if we had a true emergency. >> if only we had a presidential historian here. jeffrey engel, on this historic day, good to have you here. >> i keep thinking about benjamin franklin in the sense when he was talking about impeachment at the constitutional convention, he made the point that the president, any president, should actually welcome the idea of impeachment because what's the alternative. historically franklin said the alternative was assassination. so if you have someone you don't like politically, that's how you dealt with it. franklin said this is part of a
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broader process of how we civilize ourselves. bring law and order to a chaotic situation. if we have someone that appears to be not worthy of the office anymore, we have a process for going through. >> let's listen to the house floor. >> liberty and justice for all. >> message. >> we have a message from the president of the united states. >> madam speaker. >> madam secretary. >> i am directed by the president of the united states to deliver to the house of representatives a message in writing. >> pursuit to clause 4 of rule 1, the following enrolled bill was signed by the speaker on tuesday, december 17th, 2019. >> hr-5363. a bill to reauthorize andatory funding programs for historically black colleges and universities and other minority serving institutions and -- >> while they are doing this,
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jeff, can you explain for our viewers how this is going to proceed or what we know is going to proceed? >> well, the house rules committee met yesterday, and established the parameters. basically there's first going to be a debate about the rules. about the terms of engagement. and i don't anticipate there will be a lot of debate about the rules themselves. serve just going to be talking about impeachment. but then there will be a vote on the rules, and at that point, the debate will be six hours according to the rules passed yesterday. three hours for each side, controlled by the chairman and ranking member of the judiciary committee, jerry nadler for the majority and representative collins for the minority. six hours. that should cover both articles of impeachment. there will be then separate votes -- >> and anybody who wants to ask for time has -- will be allotted
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some time? >> they have to ask their party -- the leader in this case nadler and collins will control the time. and the speech -- the vote should be some time around 7:00. >> let's check in with jake and wolf. >> it's interesting, jake, right now the first procedural move by republicans to try to delay this as much as possible. you see a vote on a motion to adjourn. they've got 14 minutes and 12 seconds left. the republicans are voting yea in favor of this motion to adjourn. the democrats are voting nay. the democrats are the majority and they will win but it's clearly underscoring what we anticipated there will be efforts to prolong this. >> the minority party has fewer rights in the house than in the senate, but they have some rights. there is nobody who thinks that the congress is going to vote to adjourn right now. it's a silly motion. but it's just asserting themselves, exerting the few rights that they have.
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and trying to, as has been described before, gum up the works. delay the process. i suspect that if republicans have their druthers, i don't know if they would follow through on this, but if they had their druthers they'd have this vote take place at 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning. now i don't know if they have the wherewithal to do that, but they'll try to make this as onerous as possible. >> we're getting the first instinct of that. manu raju is up on capitol hill. what are you hearing up there, manu? what's going on? >> yeah, that's exactly the decision the republicans are going to make, exactly how far to go in mounting these procedural objections. what i am hearing from republican sources that they will mount a number of these motions to try to voice their frustration at the process. but this is not going to be an endless parade of motions. that's not the plan right now. they plan to set the tone at the beginning of the day which is why they are making this move right now to adjourn the house proceedings. it's a procedural thing under the house. they can do -- force this vote
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and as you mentioned, this will not pass, the democrats will reject it but it's a way to express their frustrations. expect that to be -- to happen through the course of today. this will be a -- probably a handful of times at which republicans move forward. we'll try to move on a motion to try to get, to make it clear they disagree with what's happening here. but it's not going to end up delaying things. at the moment it doesn't appear until late at night. we do expect ultimately the final votes to happen in the evening. now the republicans are signaling this could delay things by about an hour tonight. so we'll see what else they have in store but this is an effort to set the tone through the course of the day. >> it's interesting. let's go to dana. she's over in statuary hall watching this unfold. what are the democrats planning to do about this? >> they're just going to take the votes when they come up, and they understand that as manu was reporting, republicans are going to try to make this as messy as possible. but, wolf, i want to tell you
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that i am in what's call statuary hall which is just about ten feet or so, maybe a little more off the house floor. and behind me is where the suite of offices that the house speaker has. so momentarily, we expect to see the house speaker make her way to the floor of the house at some point soon. and as we're sitting here waiting for that, it's important to remember that this is a walk to begin a day of impeachment votes for the president of the united states that she did not want. that she pushed back on big time for all the times that people on the left of her caucus, as kevin mccarthy was mentioning earlier, did push her to do. but because moderates came along with her, she decided that she was going to go -- hang on one second. steny hoyer coming behind me. he is the house majority leader. he's going to the floor because one of his big jobs is to manage the floor. even on important days like
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this. so he's going to go see what's going on. probably talk to the republicans, get a sense of how much they're going to do this. but back to the notion of where we are and how the democrats are feeling today, you can feel it in the air here. it feels different. it is palpable that this is momentous. that this is grave. and again, it is, despite the democrats' talking points, not something that this speaker wanted to do for and about this president. >> dana, stand by. i know you'll be grabbing some of those members over there as this day continues. gloria, this is the first of what's likely to be several republican efforts to delay, delay, delay, as much as possible. they hate what's going on right now. >> they do hate what's going on. at a certain point they have to make a decision. which is we can delay and delay to a certain degree but do we want the american people to hear our arguments about why this impeachment is unfair and about
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why this is something the democrats wanted to do from day one? and so they have to weigh those things. there is a rule governing the consideration of what we're seeing today. so i think nthat the chair has some influence on this. yeah, they're going to play some games, and we can expect that. one thing i want to point out, though, when i heard leader mccarthy talk about democrats have wanted to impeach since day one. i went back and looked at what donald trump said a bit during the campaign. and he made the point that hillary clinton would inevitably create a constitutional crisis herself. and that we've been through enough with the clintons. we don't want to create another constitutional crisis. talking about, of course, bill clinton's impeachment which i might add also is 21 years ago almost to the day. >> dana's with the senate majority leader steny hoyer. go ahead. >> thanks for stopping. so explain what we saw on the floor and more importantly, you know, despite the screaming and
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yelling, you do have conversations with your republican colleagues. how much do you expect them to try to gum up the works with procedural votes today? >> i think they want to express what is understandable. their regret and anger even at the process that is proceeding today. however, i don't expect it to be protracted, and i don't expect it to be undermining of getting this work done today. >> and when you say expressing themselves, you know, this is a motion to adjourn which is just a way to delay what they understand will be the inevitable, right? >> that's correct. this is a way to say we don't like what you're doing today. we don't think you ought to be doing it today. there's a disagreement on that. we feel very strongly that we are compelled by our duty to our oath and the constitution and our democracy to act today where
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we have found that the president of the united states has abused his power. they don't agree with that, many of them. not everybody doesn't agree with it on that side. i don't think they'll vote with us, but this is a way to express that. but i don't believe that it's going to be an all-day obstruction of congress. i think it will be six hours of debate. it will be historic and important debate but i think we'll get the work done by the end of the day. >> before i let you go, we saw the letter that the speaker sent to your colleagues about the importance of this debate, about the importance of these votes. what are -- the speaker, what are you saying internally to your caucus about the way to comport themselves and just about the moment of the day. >> we think this is a very serious and sad day for the country in some ways, but a responsibility that we could not shirk. in light of the oath we made to
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protect and preserve the constitution of the united states and our democracy. and to confront abuse of power so that it is not repeated. but this is a serious day. this is not a day for celebration. this is not a day for claiming victory. and this is a day for doing our responsibility. we have not whipped a single member, as you know. every member has been urged to reach their conclusion based upon what they believe is consistent with their oath of office. >> thank you so much. appreciate you stopping. thanks, mr. leader. wolf and jake, back to you. >> jake, almost all of the democrats in the house of representatives are going to vote in favor of these articles of impeachment, even those who face potentially difficult re-election campaigns in districts, more than 30, that the president carried in 2016. >> any minute we expect, i think about 234 house democrats, they have the majority now since the 2018 election. any moment we expect many, if not most or even all potentially
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of them to come to the floor of the house of representatives and stand with nancy pelosi as they begin this very serious rebuke of president trump. the impooeachment. only the third time in history it's happened. >> it's a somber mood on capitol hill. we're standing by for a dramatic show of unity by the democrats as the house is kicking off debate on the articles of impeachment against the president of the united states. our special coverage is only just beginning. ers sumatra reserve. let's go to sumatra. the coffee here is amazing. because the volcanic soil is amazing. so we give farmers like win more plants. to grow more delicious coffee. which helps provide for win's family. all, for a smoother tasting cup of coffee. green mountain coffee roasters. and let me tell you something, rodeo... i wouldn't be here if i thought reverse mortgages took advantage of any american senior, or worse, that it was some way to take your home. it's just a loan designed for older homeowners, and,
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we're standing by for speaker pelosi to take the floor as the house begins historic debate on the impeachment. we expect speaker pelosi to head toward the hall any moment. pelosi has asked fellow democrats to join her in what they call a show of strength on this momentous day. a stalling tactic by republicans, a motion to adjourn, is under consideration right now. that is expected to fail, but it's likely we will see several protest motions throughout the day as republicans expressing their displeasure with this entire proceedings as we continue to watch this. we want to go back to our folks here, legal and political folks. jeffrey engel, just in terms of -- as a presidential historian, in terms of the history of all of this, how does history remember the other attempts at impeachment, and how do you think history is going to remember this? >> there's a general consensus on the previous three times we had to go through this, including nixon's, of course.
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andrew johnson's is generally understood as being an unconstitutional impeachment. the supreme court subsequently ruled that the law that johnson broke that was intentionally set for him as a trap, basically was unconstitutional. so we see that as a political fight which johnson survived by the skin of his teeth and by the way, we can get into this later, survived by bribing votes. it's a whole different question. >> classic andrew johnson. >> second with richard nixon, historians have a consensus on this that nixon did something that needed to be removed. hard to find anyone in the historical community who would argue the opposite. with bill clinton, that's the one that's really interesting and more pertinent because that's the one where the debate was not over whether or not he did it but what it meant. that's when we really had to explore what the concept of high crimes and misdemeanors was. we saw several senators, senator collins in particular, in '99, make the point that she thought bill clinton was guilty but should not be removed from
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office because it was not a high crime. so that's the way we're framing this. we only have a few examples. it's really remarkable. >> it is notable that very facts are in dispute here. it's the partisanization of facts. even facts laid out in clear sworn testimony. remember, the one that always sticks in my mind. you had repeated by gop lawmakers, and even in the last few days, ukrainians never knew about the aid delay. how could it be pressure if they didn't know? there was sworn testimony that in early july, laura cooper, defense department official, and there are emails to prove it, they were getting questions, why is the aid delayed? and yet that false claim lives on. even the idea of a quid pro quo. folks forget because it seems like a million years ago, though it was three weeks ago, the president's eu ambassador said there was a quid pro quo and everyone knew about it. yet that is questioned. there's no proof of it. and that is truly remarkable here because those facts were laid out in sworn testimony on
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live television. we broadcast them, and yet they remain in dispute today. that's remarkable. because that's a phenomenon we see really across the way, the news even covers this presidency, right? if you turn on one channel, you see a certain set of facts. you turn on another, you see a certain set of facts. >> the other thing we've never seen before is the kind of -- what democrats are saying is obstruction of congress, but of the white house just refusing to send documents, refusing to allow witnesses to testify. just a blanket we've seen in other administrations, time and time again, individual acts of a white house and administration not wanting to send particular documents or present certain witnesses for executive privilege. >> in every administration you have these disputes over oversight from congress. will this document be produced? will this witness testify? will that witness testify about the following subjects or conversations? what we have never seen before
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is the blanket refusal, the absolute refusal reflected in pat cipollone, the white house counsel's eight-page letter he sent in september that said we are not going to participate at all in the impeachment process. we're not going to allow any witnesses to testify. we're not going to produce any documents, any emails, and that is something that has never been done before. and it got the president impeached. it's going to get the president impeached. >> if you are wondering, this motion to adjourn, a motion the republicans put forward it was a delaying tactic. also an effort to just to show displeasure and signal displeasure at this entire proceeding. that is still ongoing. it's out of time. but it is, obviously, it's not going to pass. it is not going to adjourn. this is going to move forward. we'll take a short break. we'll be right back.
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we're watching very closely what's happening on the floor of the house of representatives. this motion to adjourn. 213 nay votes. those are democrats. 184 yea votes. those are the republicans. it's going to be a very, very delicate process that is about to unfold leading to the two articles of impeachment against the president. >> there's about six hours of debate scheduled right now. i mean, who knows what's going to happen. if you are looking for the key
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when it comes to these procedural motions, 216 is the vote. normally it's 218 but there's a vacancy and congressman elijah cummings passed away. 216 is the threshold. we're expecting about six hours of debate. one hour for the democrats, one hour for the republicans and on and on. each different committee gets two hours. we'll start with the rules committee and there are other committees. nia-malika, we're not going to hear a lot of debate about the actual rules. it's going to be debating whether or not president trump should be impeached. and it just reminds me how, unlike the clinton impeachment this is, where the president's own attorney during that impeachment, charles ruff went on the floor and called clinton's behavior morally reprehensible, although not to the level of impeachment. here we have republicans not only defending the president's behavior as perfect, but denying empirical fact. denying that he asked the
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president of ukraine to investigate the bidens. >> and essentially saying this was okay. the bidens did do something wrong and they are the ones that should be held in front of congress to testify. you did see kevin mccarthy not really want to answer whether it was right or wrong the president's behavior. we know the president is going to be watching this, and he's certainly going to be watching for those republican defenders. we talked about a six-page letter. in many ways, he wants to put words in those folks mouths who are going to be defending him and talking about him, to drag the bidens into this. to essentially defend his call, say that it was perfect. say that it was well within his purview to have an investigation called on by the ukrainian president, an investigation into the bidens. we'll see if that happens, right? we've seen some of that in these hearings so far. people like jim jordan. people like doug collins. we'll see if jim jordan wears his jacket. probably will wear it today. but, yeah, we know that the president who gets his ideas from tv, sees divisi s televisi
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echo chamber will be waiting for the cavalry of republicans to defend him. >> he expect s feelty. and if you look at the six-page screed from yesterday, the president said, any member of congress who votes in support of impeachment is showing how deeply they revile voters and how truly they detest america's constitutional order. this doesn't leave any room for what you were talking about with the bill clinton impeachment. yeah, what he did was inappropriate and wrong but maybe doesn't rise to the level of impeachment. you cannot say inappropriate and have the president believe you are defending him because he believes and this screed shows it, that what he did was perfect. so there is no way that any
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republican on the floor of the house can step up and say i'm not going to -- they're now all in. there is no other way for them to go. i was rereading stuff a historian who wrote hamilton said that really applies here and he said without the facts we cannot have an honest disagreement. and i think that is what is going on here. >> even jonathan turley, who was the republicans' legal expert, he criticized the call and said it was not perfect, but house republicans are so -- i don't know how you'd describe it. they're so in fear of president trump, so enthralled with president trump? but whatever the reason, they refuse to just acknowledge that the sun is in the sky. >> it's a combination of those two things. and dana's interview with leader mccarthy was a textbook case. yes, democrats have said stuff that is controversial.
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yes, hunter biden's action might have been controversial. they have plenty of time to talk about these things. today the president of the united states is being impeached and a test for the republicans is how many stand up and defend his conduct because the facts are really not in dispute here. republicans want to ignore them but they're not in dispute. the president could send in john bolton, mick mulvaney, the other aides closest to him and dispute the facts but he has not. what do we have? the public record of all these witnesses who said the president withheld the white house meeting. it is still being withheld. the president of ukraine has never had a white house meeting and temporarily withheld military aid to this country because they wanted these investigations. rudy giuliani also said he forced out the ambassador because she was getting in the way of investigations important to the president. not important to national security. not important to the country. he is a whistle-blower in plain sight if you read his words. and the republicans don't want to talk about that. so this is a very important day.
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an historic day. by the end of it, these two things will be -- >> you talk about rudy giuliani. it's not as though he has gone softly. he is out there, he just got back from ukraine where he did this special with this far right fringe cable channel, interviewing two ukrainian, former prosecutors, who trump administration officials testified were corrupt or not credible. rudy giuliani then bringing back all this dirt of questionable credibility and then meeting with president trump, presenting it to president trump. i said this before, but this is as if during the clinton impeachment if bill clinton during the impeachment was out on the town dating. like it is just the complete >> it is because they know that these republicans will not stand up to him. we may see something different in the senate where a lot of republicans say i don't like this. it was wrong. we know what they believe. they talk to us privately.
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they believe it was reprehensible. they believe what rudy giuliani is doing is beyond outside the norms, and the president condoned it, and they believe that. but you talked about the fealty and the fear. at the end of the day, this president is going to be impeached. these will be crystal clear. the president likes to say nancy pelosi doesn't run the house democratic party. it's aoc plus three. that is bogus. the most powerful woman in american politics is going to prove her authority over the democratic party today, and they're going to make a statement. and the trump takeover of the republican party if you didn't -- if you don't believe it, if you still think there's wiggle room, the trump takeover of the republican party will be all caps, all bold, underscored by the end of this day. >> the president of the united states is heading out to michigan to battle creek, michigan, for another huge political rally. and you know what he's going to say. >> he's going to talk about impeachment. i imagine he's going to use some of the talking points from this letter we've been talking about. michigan, important swing state. he won by 10,000 or 11,000 votes in 2016. he wants to frame this issue for
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his base. and he's been able to do that so far. he hasn't necessarily been able to grow his base. he hasn't necessarily been able to bring any democrats on board in terms of defending him. i think two might might with him. one is going to switch parties at some point to be a republican. and we'll see this president do this over and over again. we talk about the comparison between clinton. clinton privately fuming behind the scenes as this was going on, but publicly, very much about the business of the people, right? this was something that wasn't going to distract him. wasn't going to distract him from getting stuff done. this president clearly distracted. >> to thatclinton's fuming in private but contrition in public was to keep the democrats in line. the president's rage is to keep republicans in line. >> this is diane deget. she's going to preside as speaker pro tem. >> for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> madam speaker, i rise to a question of the privilege of the
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house and sent to the desk a privileged resolution. >> the clerk will report the resolution. >> chairman schiff and chairman nadler willfully and intentionally violated the rules of the house of representatives by abusing and exceeding their powers as chairman of committees on september 9th, 2019, without consultation of the ranking minority member, in violation of rule 9 of the rules of the permanent select committee on intelligence, chairman schiff in coordination with the committees on oversight and reform and foreign affairs announced a wide-ranging investigation into the trump/giuliani ukraine scheme whereas on september 26th, 2019, in an unprecedented action, chairman schiff unilaterally released a redacted version of the august 2019 whistle-blower complaint, whereas on september 26th, 2019, in his opening statement at a public hearing, chairman schiff engaged in a false retelling of the july 25th, 2019, telephone conversation between president trump and president zelensky.
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whereas on november 20th, 2019, a letter was transmitted from the ranking minority member to chairman schiff requesting pursuit to house resolution 660 the concurrence of the chair to issue certain subpoenas. on november 20th, 2019, after excusing the witnesses at an open hearing and without prior notice to the republicans on the committee, chairman schiff announced that the committee had a business matter to take up and convened an impromptu business meeting to consider the ranking minority members. november 20th request concerning certain subpoenas. whereas on november 20th, 2019, chairman schiff violated clause 2g 3 of rule 11 of the rules of the house of representatives which states, the chair of a committee shall announce the date, place and subject matter of a committee meeting, which may not commence earlier than the third calendar day on which -- >> woor goie're going to break this for a second. another attempt by the
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republicans to gum up the works as is is the right of the minority in the house of representatives. nobody on the floor of the house thinks this motion is going to pass. complaining about the democratic chairman and the way in which they conducted the impeachment inquiry. there are 233 democratic votes. you only need 216 to pass a resolution. republicans don't have the votes, but they are going to continue throughout the day to do, and this is not unusual. this is what the minority does, whether it's democrats or republicans. they're going to continue to try in prolong this. >> let's go to manu raju on capitol hill. potentially the republicans could delay the final votes on these two articles of impeachment by hours. >> yeah, and we're expecting the final vote actually to not occur until late in the evening, potentially even in the 8:00 hour. could spill into the 9:00 hour in the east. that's later than initially anticipated. and that's because of the procedural motions. we're seeing this already take
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place. we don't expect an endless parades of motions but expect some to start the day here. now also the democrats are making their own messages to their members. the speaker i'm told told her members through various ways, don't gloat. that was a message that nancy pelosi gave to her members. they don't want to be seen as cheering the proceedings, rooting on what's happening or expressing any emotion in a positive way in any way. they want to be -- have the tone that this is somber, this is serious, that they are doing this only because they have to. they don't want to look like they are overjoyed by the prospects that they are impeaching the president on two counts today. i'm told behind the scenes she's told this to her members. no gloeating. show unity on the floor and don't go over the top. this was sent to members offices. this is the message that democrats are planning are pursuing in the course of the debate and we're seeing how republicans are doing voicing objections on the process, trying to delay the proceedings
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and making clear they don't agree with the way this is going. ultimately there's nothing they can do to stop the ultimate outcome which the president will be impeached by the end of the day. >> they can certainly delay but not do much more than that since they're in the minority. the democrats are the majority. this whole notion, gloria, the advice from the speaker to the democrats, don't gloat. that's significant on a somber day. >> it is significant because this is a moment that nobody was really looking forward to. you have a country that is bitterly divided on this. and gloating would be the wrong thing. as she says, she always uses the phrase that she prays for the president, even though the president's letter yesterday said that he didn't believe her, that she prayed for him. personally, she said, she does pray for him, and she wants her democrats to behave in an appropriate manner. they are doing something today that cannot be undone. this is it. normally you pass legislation.
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it can be overridden in the next administration. this is history. final. this is an impeachment that you can't go back and unimpeach a president. and i think she clearly understands that having been there for the clinton impeachment. and i think her members have to take their lead from her. she doesn't -- sometimes when you pass legislation on the floor, people erupt and they cheer and they are excited. this is not going to be the case today. >> a big difference, john, and you and i covered the bill clinton impeachment. bill clinton was impeached in his second term. he couldn't run for a third term. this president about to be impeached in his first term. he's up for re-election in a few months. >> that's one of the reasons with pelosi telling them be somber, don't treat this as a celebration, even though many are looking forward to casting this vote and looking forward to impeaching president trump. speaker pelosi says this is an
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indelible mark, in terms of the political impact, that's an empty canvas. we don't know what's going to happen there. she lived through that one. she was a junior member of the house then, in the middle of the seniority ranks. but newt gingrich, the prosecuting party lost his job. bob livingston, the heir apparent lost his job because they made bill clinton's sexual behavior a public issue. the republicans lost five seats. that election happened just before impeachment played out. newt gingrich told the party to run as linking people to bill clinton's behavior. it backfired. in the short term, republicans lost. and yet, if al gore were here today he'd say he was not president of the united states because george w. bush ran in 2000. he lost the popular vote, won the presidency by saying he wanted to restore honor and integrity to the white house. we have no idea how this will play out 11 months from now. nancy pelosi has the votes today. she wants to make today very somber and then we will fight this out for the next 11 months. >> the other point in this which
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is in terms of you can't predict impeachment politics. so you talked about gingrich having to step down and republicans ultimately appointed the man that would serve as the longest serving republican house speaker in history who a judge referred to as a serial child molester, dennis hastert. nia-malika, back to today's impeachment. the house republicans, after the clinton impeachment, lost some seats. and that is a concern among democrats they may lose some seats. you already elissa slatkin say this is a vote that could lose her her job. she also sounded confident in terms of how she'd frame this. her national security background leads her to believe this is something that is wrong and also impeachable.
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so she will cast this vote today. all of these democrats, in particular and republicans as well, this is a vote that's going to follow them. this is a vote that will be of interest and a topic in 2020. we don't know how it's going to play out. but certainly you'll see both sides make an issue of this. and i think for the president, he knows this too. the president likes to spin and call things fake news. he can't do that with this. this is a scarlet letter that is on his record now, and this is why we see him being so upset about it. the letter, the most obvious example of how he's feeling about this. >> while we tend to look at things through the lens of the next election, november 2020, the people who are voting today should be thinking about their eventual obituary. for some of them it will be in the headline of their obituary, how they voted, whether they bucked their party, whether they did not buck their party. >> there's another procedural delay going on, on the house floor. our special live coverage of the
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impeachment of president trump will continue right after this. r mouth any differently? listerine® completes the job by preventing plaque, early gum disease, and killing up to 99.9% of germs. try listerine®. need stocking stuffers? try listerine® ready! tabs™.
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the holidays are here and so is t-mobile's newest, most powerful signal. and we want to keep you connected with the new iphone 11. so t-mobile is giving you an iphone 11 on us for each new line of unlimited. for yourself, your family or your small business. keep everyone connected and hurry into t-mobile today, to get up to 4 iphone 11s on us. only at t-mobile. we don't see who you're against, through or for,rs, whether tomorrow will be light or dark, all we see in you, is a spark we see your spark in each nod, each smile, we see sparks in every aisle. we see you find a hidden gem, and buying diapers at 3am.
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we see your kindness and humanity. the strength of each community. we've seen more sparks than we can say. about 20 million just yesterday. the more we look the more we find, the sparks that make america shine. welcome back on this historic day. there's a procedural motion taking place right now so we're going to check in with
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taking place right now so we will check in with our dana bash on capitol hill. dana, i know you have been talking to a lot of people this morning, what are you hearing? >> reporter: it's all particularly the same, obviously, we were talking to democrats. i was going to say, we're still waiting for the house speaker to come through here on the way to the house floor. and that could happen at any moment. but she really is leading the charge on the tone here. she's leading the charge on the tone. you heard manu talk about the fact that she and her aides and her leiutenants are reminding people to show unity and to show unity in how they comport themselvesments she's not asking them to show unity on the vote. that's a distinction. steny hoyer was out talking to me saying we're not whipping this, in english, that means we're not twisting articles. we're not telling democrats you need to vote for either of these articles. because it is a vote of
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conscience, that's not spin. that's not rhetoric. that's real. it's a real thing. one other piece of color i can tell you about, i was just talking to a democratic congresswoman who is wearing a dark dress and said that she and some of her colleagues, who are not men, because they tend to wear dark clothes anyway talked about wearing a sort of dark dress today to show the somber nature of the day the gravity of the day. not everybody is. >> that goes to show how many members have thought through what this day means visually, what it means in terms of the narrative of this congress of this president and of the country, anderson. >> thank you very much. back now with our team here in d.c. you were talking a little while ago about george washington, what he said about impeachment. it's interesting to hear from the founding fathers and through the historical presence here.
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because so many republicans are saying that this is out of the norm. >> that this is a misuse of impeachment. >> you know, we oftentimes have asked ourselves what do the founders mean? not this time. this was extraordinarily clear. george washington the president of the constitutional convention and first president and explicit in 1776 in dealing with the j. treatly and congressional hearings that he had the executive privilege not to show his diplomatic documents because he needed them to be secret. but he also said subsequently in the same message to congress, but that doesn't apply to impeachments. navgs i wrote it down -- in fact, i wrote it down. it does not occur that the inspection of the papers asked for can be relative to any purpose under the cognizance of the house of representatives, except that of an impeachment. this is what he is arguing and
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making the point, no person, no president, can be judged over what is or is not impeachable. >> that's interesting. washington is saying that these documents are too sensitive for congress or representatives to look at in the normal course of times, but impeachment, which is an extraordinary procedure, they would have access to those documents? >> yeah, because you can't have the president having the author, in washington sense, of determining what is or not available to congress for an impeachment hearing. unless, unless the president simply refuses to produce them. then you have to go to court. and once you go to court, you're in the legal system, which takes months to unfold. i mean -- i have not, and under any circumstances quarreling with george washington. >> please don't. >> but the fact that he said congress has broader powers to obtain information from the executive branch during impeachment is probably true, but under our system, it's only
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true if the courts say it's true. and what the president and his lawyers bet on was that even if you have a lousy legal position, the fact that it takes months to repudiate that position works tremendously -- >> why does it taik take months? i know systems are backlogged, blah blah blah, but this the a pretty big deal. >> judge versus life tenure and judge leon who is on the federal district court here in washington, who is dealing with the cuperman case, who is the deputy to judge bolton, the national security adviser. you know a month, it took a month even to schedule a hearing about the case, which was so outrageous. >> why does it take a month to schedule a hearing? >> because the judge either is lazy or is helping the president or is oblivious to what's going on in the world. but you know, there is no real
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enforcement mechanism for the federal judiciary except the rest of the federal judiciary and they are not in the business of telling each other how fast to work. it's frustrating. but that's just sort of how it goes. >> just, jeffrey, to your point, i looked back at reporting at the end of september/early october, where republicans were saying to me, this is bad. they were worried. they were talking about actually maybe voting for articles of impeachment and the one thing we've heard over and over is why didn't the democrats enforce the subpoenas? that's what they wanted. the republicans admitted they wanted political cover. they didn't just want a smoking gun. they wanted to see who fired the gun. so to your point about the courts, though, bush v gore, 37 days to get to the supreme court. they can do it when they want to do it. >> you know, that case was
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almost in so many ways, not to get too deep into the weeds, that case did not come up through the federal judiciary. it came up through the state courts of florida. so there was no intervening circuit court of appeals. we will get a break in, we have a short break. our coverage continues in just a moment. no matter how much life pushes us around... ...she keeps us centered. love you. introducing the center of me collection. because every 'your love keeps me centered' begins with kay. -well, audrey's expecting... -twins! grandparents! we want to put money aside for them, so...change in plans. alright, let's see what we can adjust. ♪ we'd be closer to the twins. change in plans. okay. mom, are you painting again? you could sell these. lemme guess, change in plans?
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. another historic moment right now. there is a procedural vote going on, right now on the house of representatives. by the end of the day, the president of the united states is almost certainly going to be impeepd. andrew johnson was impeached in 1868, bill clinton in 1998 and now president donald trump is about to become the third president to be impeached. >> it will forever be a black mark on his record. he will be impeached. it will be a part of his history and in as much as he professed it. as much as he pretends it doesn't bother him, as much as his staff is making him feel better. they are having a rally in michigan where he will be among tense of thousands of supporters. this bothers him. he knows this is historically undermining of him, of his presidency and it is a judgment and it's one that maybe viewers disagree with, but it is a judgment by a majority of the
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house of representatives that this president, what he did was wrong and that he needs to be removed from office in their view. >> right now they are beginning the discussions on the rules, the rules approved yesterday by the house rules committee. they have to go through this now. eventually they'll get fairly soon into the real debate over these two articles. >> we saw them debate the ten or 12 hours. they did this. this will be a part of it as well today. the meat of this bill, obviously, will be what happens at the end, the actual vote with those folks, in some ways putting their political careers on the line in deciding to vote either way this or against this president. so that will be the big moment that everyone is waiting for. certainly the president is waiting for that as well. his supporters, folks that have wanted him to be impeached for many years now. people like max 18 waters and al green as well.
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we'll see the reaction. we know the country at this point is divided. that probably won't change. this will be a president that will have to go into his re-election unlike any president we've seen with disdain on his legacy. >> this was a president, i think it was manu who asked him, one of our reporters asked the president, do you admit you've done -- >> jim acosta. >> thank you. mapu is on the hill. do you believe you did anything wrong, anything? >> no not at all. not at all. zero. and that is -- that is what the american people are hearing from him. bill clinton we were talking about 21 years ago, bill clinton admitted and apologizeed.n it took him to while, lied to the american public for seven months before he did, eventually said, i'm sorry, i made a mistake. i messed up i think was the phrase. this is a president who will never say that and who will blame the democrats and
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republicans are afraid of this. they're afraid of crossing him. >> i don't want to give him too much credit, he apology joidz because he got caught. told by a grand jury he had to testify. >> and lied. >> the first time and came back. >> by the way, if there wasn't dna everyday he probably would deny it to this day. >> i agree. you don't want to give him this much credit. >> we wouldn't be here if the president said you know what, now i understand what rouge rouge was doing in ukraine, whoa, sorry, went too far. if he had said that, we would not be here. but this president will not show contrition. the other point is this majority if you read that letter yed yesterday the rage, the falsehoods, this house majority was boerp of that behavior in the mid-term elections. yes, the opposition party normally wins, the democrats are expected to gain. but the size of this house majority, the reason nancy pelosi has this cushion. the reason we're focusing on the democrats in the districts where trump won, what was that borne
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of? a revolt against the president in suburban america because of the kind of behavior you see in that six-page letter, rage, anger, tweeting at 4:00 in the morning. rage. >> lying. >> as the president watches this today and house democrats impeach him, there is a mirror moment here. you might have a democrat make majority. you might. you wouldn't have that big of a democrat make majority. >> one of the points the house democrats make is that even though they know that the president will not be removed from office because the republican majority in the senate will not vote. >> that way you need a two-thirds majority. so it's not 51 votes. they probably won't get 51 votes is they need to make a check on president trump's behavior. because their argument is, he asked for election interference in 2016 and then came this big investigation in the mueller report into what exactly happened when it came to the russians coordinating with his
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campaign that he ultimately found nothing that can be prosecuted but potential obstruction of justice and the point is that the day after mueller's testimony before congress, that is the day that this telephone call took place. an official transcript, an official record or rough transcript of the president's asking the president of ukraine investigate the bidens. the word corruption does not appear in that rough transcript. investigate the bidens is what he wanted, even though there are members of the house of representatives who deny that he even said that. and their point is, you have to like take a stand because every time you let something like this slide, then the president does something more. >> and that was in response to the republican saying why are you rushing this through? where we have an election year from now. what's the big deal? why rush it through? and their response is, because he's doing it again and he can't be allowed to do it again, that is adam schiff's main argument. if he becomes a floor manager, i believe we will hear that.
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>> the enabling of all this is remarkable by house republicans. i have to say, whether it has to do with this behavior, which house democrats are allege is criminal, they're calling this bribery, although that's not in the articles of impeachment. there is, for instance, take what the president trump did in the last week when it came to that environmental act is the 16-year-old girl with as bergers. he attacks her, not her position on environmental issues. he attacks how her emotional displays are. she has as bergers syndrome. it's not nubl for an adult to say if you want to disagree with her environmental stance, her policy announcements, that's fine, too. you don't go after somebody, a teenager with as bergers about how they displayed their emotions. but the house republicans and into some degree now also sadly the senate republicans cannot bring themselves to say that's indecent. you shouldn't do that, no adult should do that they say things like, well, you know, the
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president displayed, he talked in a way that the american people are used to by now, not maybe the way i would do it. the point is every time that they let something like this slide, then the president takes it one step further. >> they're all in at this point. >> i want to go to manu ramu on capitol hill. the chairman of the rules committee, jim mcgovern is speaking right now. manu, walk us through what's unfolding. >> reporter: right now they're moving forward on the date on the ultimate florida debate on the articles of impeachment. this is a necessary, a procedural move necessary by the house, to structure how to debate on the articles of impeachment could go forward. so what they've ruled, that was proved by committee last night. the rules essentially sets the parameters and outlines for how the legislative debate on the articles will actually transpire in the hours ahead. there are six hours of debate. >> that will occur. once rule is approved. there will be six hours of the
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debate. they will be split evenly between the republicans and the democrats. also there are a lot of discussion behind the scenes between democrats and republicans how far the republicans will go to actually delay the ultimate vote when the president will get impeached tonight. now i am told there was a deal essentially that was cut behind the scenes in which the republicans asked for an extra hour of debate. move it up to six hours of debate on the articles of impeachment. in exchange they said they would limit the number of procedural okays that would amount, delay the ultimate proceedings on the floor. i am told adam schiff spoke to members privately today. so we'll see if the republicans stick by that. at the moment we are expecting them voicing their concern, voicing a couple proerls votes to voice the displeasure of the process perhaps we'll be limited. we may get to that ultimate vote the president will be impeached. >> stand bishop, jim mcgovern the chairman of the rules committee speaking. let's listen in.
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>> madam speaker, this really is that serious. over the past several months, the house of representatives has been conduct an impeachment inquiry into the 45th president of the united states donald john trump. our inquiry is simply to answer the following question. did president trump and his top advisers corruptly withhold official government actions to obtain an improper advantage in the next election. we now know through the hard work of our investigative committees and the president's own admission that the answer to that question is yes. the president withheld congressionally approved military aid to ukraine, a country under siege. not to fight corruption, but to extract a personal, political favor. president trump refused to meet with ukraine's president in the white house until he completed this scheme. all the while, leaders in russia, the very nation holding a large part of ukraine hostage, the very nation that interfered
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with our elections had another meeting in the oval office just last week. the president of the united states endangered our national security. the president undermined our democracy. and the president, a succession to the same office as george washington and abraham lincoln betrayed his oath to preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the united states. these aren't opinions. these are uncontested facts. now, i've read the details of the july 25th phone call with president zelensky, where president trump said, i would like to you do us a favor, though. i've seen the televised press conference, where his chief of staff openly admitted to this deal and told the nation to just get over it. hours and hours of depositions by the intelligence oversight and foreign affairs committees have been conducted where witnesses outlined the president's direct involvement in this scheme. the evidence is as clear as it is overwhelming.
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if a president undermining our national security using the federal government for his own selfish personal gain is not impeachable conduct, then, madam speaker, i don't know what is. now i've heardsome on the other side suggest this process is about overturning an election. >> that is absurd. this is about protecting our democracy. these facts are beyond dispute. the only question now is whether we are willing to tolerate such conduct. not just today by president trump, but furthermore, by any president of either party to not act would set a dangerous precedent. not just for this president but for every future president. you know, 11 months ago, many of us took an oath right here in this chamber. i've had the privilege to take that oath 12 times for now. i believe it is not just for show. as the contract between each of us and the people we represent,
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to place the national interest above partisan interest and to preserve those laws that make our country unique. we cannot reconcile the president's abuse of power and obstruction of congress with the oath of office that we took. madam speaker, we are being tested on something greater than our ability to tow a party line. something more than our ability to score the next great television sound byte. this is a democracy defining moment. history will judge us by whether we keep intact that fragile republic handed down to us by our forebearers more than 400 years ago or whether we allow it to be changed forever. for the sake of our country's future, i hope and i pray that my colleagues will make the right decision. i are eserve the balance of my time. >> gentleman reserves. gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker. madam speaker, i thank my good friend the gentleman from massachusetts, chairman mcgovern for leaving me the customary 30
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minutes. i yield so much time as i make it soon. >> the gentleman is recognized. >> thank you, madam speaker. well, madam speaker, today is a sad day for all of us. for me personally, the rules committee, the entire house of representatives and, most importantly, for the american people. for the second time in my life the house of representatives will be voting to impeach a president of the united states. but unlike in 1998, the decision to have the vote is not the result of a bipartisan process nor an open or fair process. instead, it's going to be a deeply partisan vote, coming at the end of an unfair and rushed process prescribed solely by democrats to ensure a pre-determined result. impeachment of a president is one of the most consequential acts the house of representatives can undertake. it should only be done after the fullest and most careful consideration. yet, today, after a truncated investigation, that denied the
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president due process, cherry-picked evidence and witness testimony to fit their narrative and trampled on minority rights, democrats in the house are pressing forward with a partisan impeachment vote. doing so contradicts speaker pelosi's own words back in march of this year, when she said that, quote, an impeachment is so divisive to the country that unless there's something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, i don't think we should do down that path because it divides the country. unquote. but if we're really being honest, democrats have been searching for a reason to impeach president trump since the day he was elected. in december of 2017, a current member of the majority forced a vote to impeach the president and even then long before there was even an impeachment investigation, 58 democrats voted to impeach the president. and those members have only
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grown since then to the point where the majority is now pushing forward with a final vote on impeachment needless of where it takes the country and regardless of whether or not they've proven their case. and if my colleagues in the majority believe they have proven their case, let me be clear, they have not. the entire premise of these articles of impeachment rests on a pause placed on ukrainian security assistance, a pause of 55 days. the majority spun creative narratives as to the meaning and the motive of this pause alleging the president demanded a quote quid pro quo unquote. but with no factual evidence to back it up. security aides to the ukraine was released. the administration did so without the ukraine ever initiating an investigation into anyone or anything. it's even more startling to me
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that the majority wants to move forward with this resolution given how substantially flawed and procedurally defective the entire process has been. the judiciary committee which drafted these articles of impeachment engaged in an abbreviated process, hearing from no witnesses with first-hand knowledge of the events in question. they did not conduct their own investigation and only held two hearings on this topic before drafting the articles. one with staff and one with constitutional law scholars. that's hardly the type of lengthy and serious consideration a topic as grave as impeachment demands. the committee actually charged with an impeachment investigation was the permanent select committee on intelligence, not the judiciary committee. but that committee, too, followed a primarily closed process. republicans were denied the right to call witnesses or subpoena documents. and the president was denied the
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right to representation in the committee's hearings. without respect to the minority rights and without respecting due process rights of the president, how can anyone consider this a fair process? madam speaker, it gets worse, the articles of impeachment we are considering today are based on the schiff report. the final document produced by the intelligence committee and transmitted to the judiciary committee. but the schiff report includes unsubstantiatedologists, it includes in some cases news reports as the only evidence supporting so-called fact chum assertions, and it includes at least 54 different hearsay statements as assertion of evidence without any first-hand information from witnesses to corroborate those statements. the author of the report, chairman schiff, was never questioned by the judiciary committee and he refused to sit for questions or to explain how his committee conducted its
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investigation. in fact, during a staff presentation of evidence that the judiciary committee, ranking member collins asked how the investigation was conducted that resulted in the drafting of the schiff report? but he never received an answer. during the rules committee consideration of house resolution 775, there were numerous times when members on both sides of the aisle posed questions to our witnesses, questions they could not answer because they sit on the judiciary committee and were not the author of the report that brought about hres 775. the author has never appeared before members of the minority to explain a single thing in the report or to provide factual information supporting the many assertions it contains. madam speaker, this is no way to go about impeaching the president of the united states. the articles before us are based on very limited information. they are based on hearsay, on
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news reports, and on other unsupported allegations. they are based on a report written by a member of congress who refused to answer questions about it. and i do not believe the allegation, which are subject to interpretation, actually rise to the level of an impeachable offense. to make matters worse, when republicans attempted to exercise one of their rights under house rules, they were shut down by chairman nadler. under clause 2 j 1 of rule 11, the minority is allowed to demand a minority hearing day. on december 4th, the republicans on the judiciary committee properly exercised that right and transmitted a demand to chairman nadler for a hearing day at which the minority could call their own witnesses. and to be clear, madam speaker, a minority hearing day is not subject to the chair's discretion. it is a right and republicans on
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the judiciary committee properly demanded the exercise of that right. and, yet, chairman nadler declined to allow a minority hearing date to be held before the voting of these articles. i think we can all agree that it would have been better for the institution and for the american people to allow all voices to be heard and all witnesses to be questioned before proceeding to a vote on something as this consequential. and yet, the majority trampled on that right. but i suppose i should not be surprised by any of this, when the house passed hres 660, the resolution setting up the official impeachment inquiry, less than two months ago, i warned the house that the majority was doing was setting up a closed unfair process that could only have one outcome. and today, we are seeing the end result of this closed and unfair process. a quick rush to judgment forced
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through not one but two committees in short order with minority rights trampled, witness left unquestioned and due process ignored. it is also disappointing that members are not being given more time to deba it this issue on the floor. last night at rules committee, i offered and amendment to double the floor time debate from 6 to 12 hours. this would have allowed for roughly the same amount of debate time used in the clinton impeachment. it would have ensured that all members could have the opportunity to speak on the floor. unfortunately, that amendment was not accepted. well, i know my friend chairman mcgovern did the best he could. i do think it's ironic that when all is said and done, the 13 members of the rules committee spent more time discussing hres 775 in committee yesterday than we will spend debating it on the house floor for every member
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today. i think that's a disservice to the members of the body and to the american people. madam speaker, we deserve better. it's been a flawed process that led to this flawedio ut come. the house of representatives deserves better than that. the president certainly deserves better than that. more importantly, the american people deserve better than what we're doing here today. i oppose proceeding any further. i oppose the rule. i oppose this limited and unfair process. i certainly oppose impeaching the president of the united states. with that i urge opposition to the rule and i reserve the balance of my time. >> chairman reserves gentleman from massachusetts. >> madam speaker, i'd like to ask unanimous consent. i want to insert into the record a statement, a letter that i sent with regard to the members day. i want it correct -- i think it's important to correct the record thorpe zero points of order that lie against hres 775.
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>> objection. so ordered. >> i want to yield missile 30 seconds. >> gentleman is recognized. >> we are hear to focus on the president's behavior, we should be processed on not just proc s process. democrats and republican versus had equal opportunity to participate in the month's long impeachment inquiry. members of all parties have been involved in every stage from sitting in and asking questions in closed door deposition and questioning open hearings. the committees took more than 100 hours of deposition testimony from 17 witness and held seven public hearings, which included republican-requested witnesses. they produced a 300-page public report that laid out their findings in evidence. the judiciary committee then took that report and conducted two public hearings, evaluating the evidence and the legal standard for impeachment before reporting of the two articles. >> gentleman's time is expired. >> i yield myself an additional 15 second. >> the go se recognized. >> president trump was given the
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opportunity to participate in the judiciary committee's review of the everyday presented against him. he chose not to participate and president trump today has not provided any exculpatory evidence instead has blocked numerous witnesses from testifying about his actions. at this point, madam speaker, i would like to yield three minutes to the majority whip mr. clyburn. >> the gentleman is -- >> madam speaker i rise today feeling the full weight of my duty as a member of this body. reflected upon our oath of office to support and defend the constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic. it is my sincere belief that under the circumstances that bring us here today, that it is only one path for us to take to fulfill that oath. thomas -- in his first of a
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series of pamphlets entitled the american crisis, published 243 years ago tomorrow in tone, that these are the times that drive men's souls. some are soldiers and sunday shine patriots will end this crisis slick from the service of their country. but he understands it by it now. deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. tyranny, like hell is not easily conquered. these words were written at a time within our founders were rebelling against the tire ran cal rule of the british monarchy. today, we have a president who seems to believe he is a king or above the law. and warned us that so unlimited a power can belong only to god
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almighty. my faith leads me to take very seriously the following word of our oath to faithfully discharge the duties of the office so help me god. madam speaker, three days ago, i joined with the bipartisan delegation of our colleagues celebrating the 75th anniversary of the battle of the bulge. we laid wreaths at the memorials of generals george patton and anthony mccullough. we visited fossils occupied by some brave soldiers who fought in some of the worst weather weather ever visited upon a battlefield and we visited the luxembourg american cemetery, the final resting place of thousands of them and general george patton. they were not summer soldiers in
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their efforts 75 years ago to preserve the republic and we must not be sunshine patriots today in our efforts to protect the constitution upon which this great republic stands. while our fight is not in the trenches of battlefields but in the hallowed halls of this congress. our duty is no less patriotic. and i yield back. >> chairman. yields back. gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself 15 seconds to respond to my friend. >> the gentleman is recognized. >> president trump for the record was not provided the opportunity to challenge the facts and still has not received the materials from the judiciary as required by hres 660. another exam of why this isn't a fair process. with that madam speaker, i would like to yield to the gentle lady from wyoming, the distinguished chairman of the republican conference for a purpose of
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unanimous consent request. >> madam speaker. >> the lady. >> madam speaker, i ask unanimous consent to amend hres 767 to provide for voting by a manual call of the roll, so the american people can see precisely who is supporting the impeachment of a duly elected president. members should be required to stand and identify themselves openly and on camera on the question of adoption of these articles of impeachment. >> our time has been yielded by purpose of debate by the gentleman of massachusetts. does the gentleman from massachusetts yield for this unanimous consent request? >> i do not. >> the gentleman from massachusetts does not yield, therefore, unanimous consent request cannot be entertained, gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker. i yield to my good friend the gentleman from missouri distinguished secretary and republican conference for purpose of the unanimous consent request. >> gentleman a shall state his
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request. >> thank you, gentleman. mr. speaker, ms. madam speaker i is ask for unanimous consent to amend hr-767 to provide 12 hours of debate equally divided by the ma majority and minority to allow each member of the house one minutes and 40 second of debate as opposed to currently 50 seconds. the people's representatives deserve the right more right of more than 50 seconds to be heard in this important matter. >> our time has been yield as i said for the purpose of debate by the gentleman from massachusetts. does the gentleman from massachusetts yield for this unanimous consent request? the gentleman from massachusetts does not yield, therefore this unanimous consent request cannot be entertained. gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, very must have, madam speaker. i want to yield four minutes to my good friend, the distinguished member from the energy and commerce committee and house rules committee, dr. burgess great state of
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texas. >> the gentleman is recognized for four minutes. >> i thank the gentleman for yielding. yesterday the rules committee spent eight hours considering whether to bring hres-765 articles of impeachment to the house floor. given the 4-9 ratio of republicans to democrats on the committee, it is no surprise we are not considering the articles before us. despite robust debate on the so-called facts derived from the impeachment investigation and the process by which they were obtained, democrats and republicans remain in opposition to each other on our conclusions. as outlined yesterday by ranking member collins and several members of the rules committee through direct quotes, some democrats have been seeking president trump's impeachment since his inauguration. the rush to impeach first and solidify the case second threatens the credibility of the process and threatens the credibility of the body engaged this very house of
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representatives. in fact, it has been quoted before, it will be quoted again today, chairman nadler recognized the gravity of impeachment when he stated in december of 1998, quoting here, the effect of impeachment is to overturn the popular will of the voters as expressed in a national election there must never be a narrowly voted impeachment or an impeachment substantially supported by one of our major political parties and largely opposed by the other. such an impeachment would lack legitimacy and produce divisiveness and bitterness in our politics for years to come and will call into question the very legitimacy of our political institutions. end quote. well, on october 31st, this house voted to authorize the official impeachment
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investigation hre 660 did not include the robust minority party previous impeachment investigations, even more concerning, chairman nadler, chairman schiff, refused to comply with the very rules of the house in granting access to committee records for members in scheduling a minority hearing in a reasonable amount of time, thus preventing the american people from being equally represented in the process. refusing to allow members to access their on records, these are members of the house of representatives. we were not allowed to access these records obtained now in secret under armed guard in the intelligence committee. but it's required under section 2e of rule 11. and it denied members the ability to do their job. the judiciary committee did not hear testimony from even one fact witness, not even one, after they received a deluge of materials from the intelligence
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committee this reversal of responsibility is, indeed, unprecedented. but turning to the case upon which the argument is based, we had a whistle proceblowewhistle. not a fact witness. a whistle blower who never appeared before any member of congress that we know of. a whistleblower complaint concerning a congratulatory call between president trump and president zelensky of ukraine. the whistleblower is known to have contact with chairman schiff's staff, who ill republicans were denied any contact. the whistleblower complaint is not based on first-hand knowledge and the call transcript that was to support impeachment reveals nothing more than a congratulatory phone call. look, our request for investigations to how american foreign aid will be spent does not, does not equal soliciting election interference. the evidence brought before us does not amount to a high crime, indeed it does not amount to any
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crime, democrats claim that we must protect the integrity of our election. look, if you really cared, then i have to ask, what are we missing while we have been focused on impeachment? we tied up the intelligence committee. with etied up the judiciary committee and oh, by the way, the ways and means committee had to give up their room. they couldn't even meet while you were doing all of this. so this impeachment investigation is being painted as a protection against future interference, when in reality president trump's request looks back to the 2016 election. russia, russia is the winner in this exchange. because they have disrupted the process. >> the gentleman from massachusetts. >> madam speaker, the gentleman is passionate about record. i should remind him that we've gotten no records from this white house, not a single document. at this time i'd like to yield one-and-a-half minutes to the gentle woman of florida. >> the gentleman is recognized one-and-a-half minutes.
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>> madam speaker i come to impeachment with deep sadness. the facts of this case are painful and indisputable. we know the president illegally held up congress ally appropriated aid to ukraine. we know that he conditioned the release of this aid on ukrainian president sellen is ski's opening an -- zelensky's opening an investigation based on a debunked conspiracy theory about his political rival and foreign interference in the 2016 election. we also know the president actively blocked congressional attempts to determine the extent of his misconduct by ordering executive branch officials to defy subpoenas and withhold information. despite the unprecedented obstruction from the president, the evidence in this case is powerful enough that to delay this vote any further would risk interference in the 2020 election. and the permanent erosion of our
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system of checks and balances. madam speaker, this is not a matter of politics. this is a matter of protecting the integrity of our democracy for the next generation. as we labor to pass on to future generations, many of the great hallmarks of our society, we must also work with active stew wardship and vigilance to pass on a vibrant and functional democracy. if we don't do our duty to protect the constitution, the republic that we hand to our children will be less vibrant. if we do not do our duty to protect the constitution, the republic that we hand to our children will be less resilient and less effective. >> gentle lady's time expired. gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you very much, madam speaker. madam speaker i yield four minutes to my good friend and fellow member of the rules committee and the gentt lady of
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arizona miss lesco. >> the lady is recognized. >> thank you for yielding me the time. madam speaker, you know, god takes us on journeys in our life and about 30 years ago, i was married to an abusive ex-husband. and when i finally left him, there are times in my life i had no money and no place to live. and i tell you what, i never dreamed in a million years that i would be standing here today as a congresswoman in the united states house of representatives. and i tell you what, i never would have believed that i would be standing here talking about impeachment of a president of the united states. i serve on the judiciary committee. i also serve on the rules committee. i have spent hours and hours an
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hours reading transcripts, looking at documents, hearing testimony, and i can tell you one thing, i believe this is the most unfair, politically biased rigged process that i have seen in my entire life. here are the facts. there is no proof, none, that the president has committed an impeachable offense. not one of the democrat witnesses, not one was able to establish that the president committed bribery, treason, or high crimes and misdemeanors as required in the u.s. constitution. and as i've said before, the democrats really undermining their own, own argument here
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because 17 out of the 24 democrat members on the judiciary committee voted here on this floor to put forward, move forward articles of impeachment on july 17th of this year, before the president trump call even took place. and five out of the nine rules committee members that are democrats did the same thing. so if your argument is that this phone call is the main reason for this impeachable offense, why didn't you vote for impeachment moving impeachment forward before the call even took place? the process has been ricked from the start. other member versus told you, i mean, never in the history of the united states have we had impeachment that's gone through the intelligence committee in closed-door hearings where a member of the judiciary committee, myself, wasn't even
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able to ask one single question of a fact witness. the whole thing has been rigged, it's been unfair, in the process that you had set forth, you made sure that the president didn't have any right to have his counsel there until judiciary, but by then it was too late. it was too late. because there was no fact witnesses allowed in judiciary. so i couldn't even ask a question nor could the president. this is the most partisan impeachment in the history of the united states. not one republican voted for it in judiciary committee. not one republican voted for it in rules. and not one republican i don't think is going to vote for it here today. madam speaker, this is a sad day. i believe the democrats are tearing this country apart! they're tearing families a
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apart! may god continue to bless all of you. may god continue to bless the president of the united states and may god continue to bless our great nation. and i yield back. >> members are reminded to direct their comments to the chair. gentleman from massachusetts. >> madam speaker if republicans want to defend the president's endefensible behavior, they can do so but i would urge my colleagues to stand up for the constitution and to stand up for this country in our dreams at this point i'd like to yield one-and-a-half minutes to the gentleman from california a distinguished member of the rules committee. >> gentleman is recognized for one-and-a-half minutes. >> thank you, madam speaker. i want to take a minute to thank the leadership of the rules committee, mr. mcgovern and mr. cole for our civility last night. although it was a long hearing and we are very much in disagreement, i felt powder to be a part of that hearing.
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i want to recognize both the ranking member and the chair. the previous speaker as a part of that rules committee, i would just say the passion that she demonstrated in her comments, i can't say how much i completely disagree we her. which is a statement on the environment we find ourselves in, and i unfortunately agree with some of her comments, but where the responsibility is, i would put at the white house and the president. he is the divisive one. he is not trying to heal our wounds. the reality and urgency of this moment cannot be more than consequential to the american democracy. this is not a hypothetical. president trump violated the law and solicited foreign interference in our election. at the same time objective expert versus overwhelming evidence that russia interfered in the 2016 election and is actively engaged in undermining
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the 2020 elections. our vote today and the senate's actions on impeachment have very real long-term consequences for american democracy. where do we go from here if the senate does not remove him? the president has a pattern of escalating behavior. the day before the special counsel testified to congress that the russian government interfered in our election in swing and systemic fashion. president trump made this call. two days before that, the president says that article 2 of the constitution says that he can do whatever he wants. as washington warned in its farewell address, foreign interference tampers with domestic factions and misleads public opinion. we must honor our nation our founders and impeach this president for betraying the american people. i yield back. >> thank you, very much, madam speaker. i yield two minutes to my good
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friend, a former member of the rules committee, mr. verne of alabama. >> the gentleman is recognized for two witness. >> madam speaker i rise in strong opposition to the rule and underlying resolution to impeach president trump. when the framers granted the house the power to impeach, they feared that it would be abused. today those fears are realized in record speed this majority has assembled hearsay, speculation and presumptions for the purpose of overturning the 2016 election. we are not here today days before christmas because the majority assembled a case against president trump? the democrat make majority believes impeachment would provide their members time to distance themselves from their vote. but i assure you, madam speaker, the american people are watching. many of my colleagues have from day one rejected the people's choice of president trump. but another president will come along more to the majority's liking. our actions here today will be
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remembered and will set the standard. the second article of impeachment seeks to remove president trump for failure to produce certain requested witnesses and documents. but as the majority knows, every president in history has asserted executive privilege. the house has a legal avenue to challenge the president. the courts. but the majority has skipped this step, showing that this is about impeachment as fast as possible however possible. most of my friends on the other side of the aisle had no problem backing president obama when he stonewalled the house for years to block our request to find out the truth in the fast and furious investigation. >> that is why i filed an amendment to the resolution rejected by the rules committee saying, based upon the democrat make majority standard, they should have written articles of impeachment against president obama and eric holder. i wish my colleagues would think about the standard being set. i project that they will very soon regret it and i yield back.
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>> gentleman yields back. gentleman from massachusetts. >> madam speaker i yield one minute to the gentle woman of california, a distinguished member of the committee. >> the gentle lady is recognized one minute. >> madam speaker, the facts are clear to quote the usa today editorial board, trump used your tax dollars to shake down a vulnerable foreign government, to interfere in a u.s. election for his personal benefit. the rule of law is what gives our great country its strength. the rule of law is what separates us from third world countries, where dictators reign for decades on end. the rule of law is what makes us the envy of the world. the place that other countries look to as they grow their own democracies. and it is the rule of law that brings us here today.
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we never want to see the rule of law deteriorate or rampant corruption take hold. we never want to see the day when future generations flee for refuge in another country. the way others are seeking refuge in our southern border right now. i urge my colleagues to vote yes. american value in our constitutions are worth fighting for. >> gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker, i yield two minutes to my very good friend distinguished lady from indiana and distinguished members of the ways and means committee. >> thank you, madam speaker. i rise today in direct opposition to this rule, in opposition to the device it bipartisanship that is on display right now in this house of representative himself. it's no secret the democrats have wanted to impeach president trump since day one regardless
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of any fact. they knew the result they wanted. they just needed time to figure out how to get there. so they began their impeachment inquiry, behind closed doors, selective leaks, instead of transparency. once they crafted their perfect narrative. they moved on to public hearings. they hoped the american people wouldn't notice they failed to uncover one piece of evidence to justify impeachment. they failed to make the case for this draftic action. yet, here we are, for the first time in history, a president is on the brink of being impeached with the votes of one single party. but let's be clear about one thing. this impeachment obsession is not about accountability. it's not about justice. it's not even about the constitution. it's about pure partisan politics at its worse and you're watching it rye here and the american people see right through this today! they've seen the rigged process.
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they've seen the lack of transparency and the complete absence of any supporting evidence. they know that washington's broke and that's why they sent us here to fix it. but now house democrats are dividing the country and further shaking people's trust. it's a sham impeachment. it's been carried out at the expense of hard working americans who just want us to move forward. madam speaker, this charade should go no farther. we should stop wasting time. focus on what keeps our nation moving forward. helping workers and families thrive. protecting the safety and security of our country. i urge my colleagues to vote against the rules so we can get back to work for the american people. i yield back. >> madam speaker i yield one minute for the gentleman from mexico. >> madam speaker, no one came to congress to impeach a president.
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we came here to solve the mighty issues that impact the lives of the constituents we pledged to serve. i'm here because too many families in my district still rely on water trucked in from dozens of miles away. i'm here because too many mexican children still go to school hungry. i'm here because too many women in new mexico drive for hours to find a doctor able to care for them. but this moment has found us. we have reached a point in time where our love of country compels action, where our duty to this republic mandates that we do what's right. the president's behavior is so blatantly wrong that ignoring his abuses of power would be abdicating the oath we made to protect this country and uphold our constitution. thank you and i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may con seoul. >> zbe recognized.
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>> thank you, madam speaker. if we defeat the previous question, i will offer an amendment on the rule. the house shall not proceed to consideration of the underlying resolution until sex conditions are met. all evidence in the possession of chairman schiff has been made available to the judiciary committee that chairman schiff appear before the judiciary committee to testify to the report that he authored. >> that all underlying unclassified evidence has been made available to the public minority members of the judiciary committee have received their right to a minority hearing day, minority witnesses requested by the ranking, by rank member nunes and ranking member collins are called and allowed to be heard in accordance with hres-660 and subpoenas requested by the ranking, by ranking member nunes and the intelligence committee are issued and forced. madam speaker, to be clear, my amendment ensures the majority does not proceed without providing a fair and equitable
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transparent process one that respects minority rights and opens up the investigation to all members of the house and one that allows republicans on the judiciary committee to examine the most relevant witnesses. perhaps most crucially, it will alloy all members to fully consider all the information available to the committee that actually conducted the impeachment investigation to permanent select committee on intelligence. the process in the house followed has been abysmal. it was closed, an unfair process and did not respect minority rights and did not give the president due process. but we can change that today. we defeat the previous question, the house will only move forward two a real, thorough and ultimately fair process that all members can be proud. madam speaker i asked unanimous consent to insert the text of my amendment in the record along with extraneous material immediately prior to the vote on the previous questions. no vote on the previous question. i yield one minute to my good
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friend gentleman from new york. >> zbe recognized for one minute. >> i thank my good friend. the majority is has thrown almost every allegation imaginable against this president. yet, these articles of impeachment, that have been submitted. cannot name a single actual crime. after all the drama, the majority has not found a single shred of evidence, only second, third, fourth-hand information. but the facts have remained the same. the transcript speaks for itself. there was no quid pro quo. the ukrainian government said multiple times they felt no pressure whatsoever. the aid ultimately came. even speaker pelosi said that this whole thing would have compelling overwhelming bipartisan support. none of those things exist. i urge my colleagues to stand against the rule and the forthcoming articles of impeachment. this is a disgrace and dangerous to america and i urge a no.
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>> the gentleman yields back. gentleman from massachusetts. >> madam speaker, i yield one minute to the distinguished gentleman from massachusetts. >> the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> madam speaker, to paraphrase one of our founding mothers, ab gal adams, people may let a president fall yet still remain a people. but if a president lets his people slip from him, he is no longer a president. just as abigail adams warned, donald trump has let the people slip from him. he works for himself. not us. he tried to extort a foreign government into investigationing a political rival and he has unlawfully withheld witnesses and evidence. if we want a democracy today we must stand for the rule of law. a vote to impeach is a vote to remain a government that is of, for and by the people.
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it is a vote borne of great fear for our future. but also rooted in optimism. >> that if we stand for the truth, for our constitution, we can continue to create a country of liberty, justice and a quality for all. i yield the remainder of my time. >> gentleman from oklahoma. >> might i ininquire, madam speaker how much time we have remaining? >> gentleman from oklahoma has five and one quarter minutes remaining. >> thank you. >> gentleman from massachusetts has 13 and a quarter minutes remaining. >> thank you very much, madam speaker, i yield 90 seconds to my good friend the distinguished gentleman from new york. >> the gentleman is recognized for a minute-and-a-half. >> thank you, madam speaker and my colleagues on the other side of the aisle throughout this prole process, their allies in the media, they like to say republicans only want to talk about process not substance. even though we continue to talk about substance as well, they
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declare their facts are uncontested. they just did it again. so just to maybe recap a few for everyone watching at home as well as my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, hopefully they'll listen. president zelensky says there was no demand no, pressure, no quid proio. andre yermak said it was regard to the first meeting ambassador sondland is completely refuted. we heard from ambassador sondland that had mit head heard from president trump that he didn't want any quid pro quo and he was guessing what he stated otherwise. ambassador sondland, that is, said he was guessing and that no one on the planet had told him otherwise. ambassador volker tells us president zelensky didn't know there was a hold on aid on july 25th. he didn't find out until he read nit politico july 29th. the aid got released shortly thereafter and ukraine didn't have to do anything in order to get the hold released. when our colleagues on the other side of the aisle says do me a
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favor. it says do us a favor. if you look at that paragraph, it's about ukrainians, if you want to ignore the charlie op-ed, chalupa worked with the u.s. embassy the black ledger to bring down on the trump campaign, whether it's a statement or origins of the steele dossier. these are all examples. look at ken vogles reporting from january 2017, it is irrefutable. these are all substance so stop saying the facts are uncontested. i yield back. >> gentleman from massachusetts. >> i ask unanimous consent to insert page 69 on intelligence's november 20th open hearing, where secretary of defense laura cooper testified that the department of defense was not able to distribute all of the aid with there are 35 million not provided since it was released so late. i ask to insert into the record november 18th ap article
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entitled u.s. officials knew of ukraine trump anxiety. at this point madam speaker i'm proud to yield one minute to the gentleman of massachusetts, mr. kennedy. >> the gentleman the recognized for one minute. >> dear elly and james, this is a moment you will read about in your history books. today, i will vote to impeach the president of the united states and i want you to know why. he broke our laws. he threatened our security. he abused the highest, most sacred office in our land. i want you to know that it does not feel good. i can't stop thinking about the cost to our country. not just the impeachable offenses, but the collateral damage of a president who uses power like a weapon against his own people.
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a road to our decency, degrades our dignity. i don't know how they will tell the story of this earth. but i want to tell you the story of this day. let the record show that today justice won. >> that we did our job. >> that we kept our word. >> that we stood our sacred ground. let the record show we did not let you down. i love you. listen to mom. i'm be home soon. >> the gentleman's time is expir expired. >> gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker. i will reserve my time for the moment. >> gentleman from massachusetts. >> madam speaker i'm proud to yield one minute to the gentle woman from california. ms. lee. >> thank you, very much, madam speaker, first of all, let me just say i taught my children that there are consequences if they broke the law. i am saddened but i'm not
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shocked that we are here today considering articles of impeachment against president trump. i am saddened but i'm not shocked because of the pattern of corruption we have seen from this president. yes, i am saddened, but i'm not shocked, because this president has routinely shown his disregard of congress and the rule of law. the facts are not in dispute. the president abused his power, defied the public's trust and betrayed his oath of office. he undermined our elections by corruptly soliciting foreign interester feerns in our foreign -- interference in our foreign elections and obstructed congress every step of the way in an effort to cover it all up. donald trump has been and rep mains a threat to our national security, a clear danger to our democracy and wholly unfit to serve as president of the united states. we have an obligation to act today to uphold the constitution, but also to show
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our children and grandchildren that no one is above the law. >> that includes the president of the united states. >> gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker. i continue to reserve my time. >> the gentleman. >> theientt lady is recognized one minute. >> thank you, mr. chairman. madam speaker, today i rise to defend our democracy. in this chamber, we debate the nation's most pressing issue. and often reasonable people can draw different conclusions, but not today. the facts are black and white. president trump abused the power of his office for personal and political gain and then he engaged in a coverup. it is up to us to confront those facts and vote to preserve and protect our democratic republic. this is not a fight i or my colleagues sought out when we ran for congress. but it is one we pledged when we raised our right hand and swore
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an oath to defend our constitution. anything other than a vote to impeach will be read as a vote enforcing a future president without rules or consequence, anything goes, no hold's bars branch of executive authority that will leave us weaker and surely undermine what the framers passed down w. we need party loyalty and vote our conscience for what's really at stake here today. the sanctity of our constitution and sanctity of our democracy. thank you and i yield back. >> gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker, i continue to reserve my time. >> gentleman from massachusetts. >> madam speaker, i'd like to ask unanimous consent to insert in the record a title ukraine knew of aid freeze by early august. >> at this point i'd like to yield one minute to a gentleman
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from maryland. >> she recognized for one minute. >> thank you, gentleman, for yielding. mading a speaker i rise today in support of the two articles of impeachment against president trump for abuse of power and obstruction of congress. voting to impeach the president is a weighty decision. it is fought something you reach for. it's something you are brought to. reluctantly when the evidence presented can no longer be denied. in this sober and historic moment, members of congress are called upon to uphold our oath of office and our duty to the cons stug. today we answer that call. the president's actions compromise the national security of the united states, undermine the integrity of our democratic process and betray the trust of the american people. in soliciting foreign interference, president trump took direct aim at the heart of our democracy. the american people should decide our elections, not a foreign country. as long as the president continues to invite foreign
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interference into our democracy, the integrity of the 2020 election remains at risk. the question is, will congress allow the president to place his personal interests above those of his country? i urge my colleagues in the house to join me in answering that question with a resounding no, because no one, not even the president of the united states is above the law. i yield back. >> gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker. i continue to reserve my time. >> the gentleman reserves. gentlemen from massachusetts. >> i ask unanimous con70 to insert politico magazine article entitled this is what a legitimate anti-corruption effort in ukraine would look like, which explains legitimate requests are made through the doj office of international affairs purchase student to the united states fiscal assistance treat why i. >> so ordered. >> at this point i'd like to yield one minute to the gentle woman from florida. >> the gentle lady is recognized
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one minute. >> the president abused his power, violated his oath of officer and sought to elevate himself a dictator or a king. but we are not a monarchy. we are the united states of america. we are a republic, a democracy, where the executive does not have absolute power. america was founded on a system of checks and balances. when the president withheld military aid to vulnerable ukraine for a personal favor to manufacture dirt against a political opponent, help went too far. he undermined america's national security. he sought to sabotage our elections. he elevated his personal interests over the interests of america. then he tried to cover up his scandalous behavior and obstructed the investigation. he violated his oath of office. but i intend to uphold mine to protect and defend the constitution of the united states of america. the president must be impeached today.
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i yield back. >> gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, mald am speaker. i -- madam speaker, i continue to reserve my time. >> gentleman reserves. gentleman from massachusetts. >> i ask to insert a boston globe article entitled impeach the president. december 11th usa ed doral impeach president trump. the president's ukraine shakedown and stonewalling are too serious for the host to ignore. >> without objection. >> at this point i'd like to yield one minute to the gentle woman from florida miss wasserman schultz. >> the gentle lady is recognized one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. throughout this process i listened to career diplomats testify in depositions and found myself contemplating the gravity of this decision. one of my daughters asked then how i make my decision aboutible people. . i told her that when her future children learn about president trump's impeachment, they may ask, mommy, what did grandma do?
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i want my daughter to tell her children grandma did the right thing, because in america, no one is above the law. with his conduct around ukraine, president trump corruptly abused his power at direct odds with our national welfare and our constitution this president put his interests before those of this nation, left unchecked, he'd do it again and has said so. the actions and ongoing schemes that led us to this moment are severe threats to our national security and democracy that we cannot defend or dismiss w. history watching, i must fulfill my constitutional the duty to impeach this president. his assault on our constitution lead no other choice. i yield back. >> gentleman from oklahoma there thank you, madam speaker, i reserve my time. >> gentleman from massachusetts. >> i yield one minute to the gentleman of california. >> the gentleman is recognized one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. today the house is voting to
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affirm a conservative principle. what makes america the strongest and most prosperous nation in the world is our reference for the rule of law. it is our love of the law that protects our freedoms, our private property, our families from the exercise of arbitrary power. a real threat to american leadership in the 21st century is internal decline. we choose not to stand idly by while we see the corrupting of our body politic with an attitude that might makes right that winners don't have to follow the rules. in voting to impeach, with eremember lincoln's lyceum address, let every well-wisher to prosperity swear by the blood of the revolution never to violate in the least particular, the laws of this country. and never to tolerate their violation by other. let it be taught in schools and seminarys and in colleges, let it be written in primary spelling books and alma nan
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knacks, let -- almanacs and enforced in the courts of justice and in short let it become the political roller jen of the nation. >> dpe from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker, i continue to reserve, i'm waiting for additional speaker. but we reserve our time. >> the gentleman reserves. >> the gentleman from massachusetts. >> madam speaker, i ask unanimous consent to insert into the record december 17ing cnn article entitled fact check, trump's wild letter to pelosi is filled with wild claims. i yield to gentleman mr. butterfield. >> madam speaker aarrive on this solemn occasion as we the house of representatives exercise the power go everyone to us by the united states constitution. the original constitution was flawed in some respects, but with respect to presidential misconduct it was unmistakable. the framers knew mr. presidents could be corrupt with power so
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impeachment was written into our organic laws. since taking office, nearly three years ago, president trump has consistently and intentionally divided this country. he has consistently encouraged foreign actors to interfere in our election. he has thumbed his nose, maed am speaker at the legislative branch. enough is enough. we must protect our constitution, our democracy. i will vote today to defer serious charges against president trump and deliver the charges to the senate for trial. a place where president trump can defend himself and attempt if he chooses to convince the senate and the american people that his conduct does not violate the constitution. i thank the gentleman, i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. gentleman from oklahoma. >> madam speaker i yield one minute to my good friend, distinguished combat veteran for our country, mr. barrett of indiana. >> the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> madam speaker, today marks a sad day for america.
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instead of getting work to solve the the issues of our time, the house democrats have decided to try to discredit president trump and the undo results of the 2016 election. the facts here are clear that president did not commit any crimes. he did not break any laws and there was no quid pro quo. this has been a secretive misdirected process from the very beginning. and the american people see right through it. i look forward to voting against this impeachment charade and getting back to work to support the efforts of president trump to continue growing our economy, creating jobs and improving the lives of all americans. i yield back the balance of my time. >> gentleman yields back. >> madam speaker i yield one minute to gentleman of pennsylvania mr. boyle. >> the gentleman is recognized one minute. >> thank you. madam speaker, this is the fourth impeachment proceeding against an american president
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and the most serious. the president committed numerous crimes, threatening the national security. ultimately, the manner before us today is not a question of fact. for the evidence is undisputed. nor is it a question move law as the constitution is clear. the heart of the matter is this. will members of this house have the courage to choose fidelity to the constitution over loyalty to their political party? for the stake of our constitution and our country, for americans today and tomorrow, i urge all members to sumen the courage to uphold the rule of law and vote yes. i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. gentleman from oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker, i continue to reserve my time. >> gentleman from massachusetts. >> i reserve one minute to the distinguished gentleman from missouri, mr. clay.
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>> gentleman is rec nieltzed one minute. >> i arrive today to hold john alleged john trump accountable for his repeated abuse of power. his deliberate obstruction of the house's constitutionally mandated oversight responsibility and his unprecedented misuse of the presidency to weaken the separation of powers. and subvert our constitution by dangling 391 million in congressionally appropriated tax dollars over the head of an embattled ally in order to coerce a fraudulent investigation into a potential political opponent our founders fear a lawless, amoral president would willfully put national security at risk for his own personal gain. in 1974, republicans made it clear, that their ultimate
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loyalty was not to one man but to upholding the constitution. today the uncontested evidence shows donald trump violated his oath of office. my friends on both sides of the aisle can either defend him or defend the constitution. >> time expired. >> it will not permit you to do both. i yield back. >> gentleman from oklahoma continues to reserve. >> i do, madam speaker. >> gentleman from massachusetts. >> can i inquire of the gentleman how many nor speakers he has in. >> i am fair to close when my friend is. >> gentleman from oklahoma is recognized to depose. >> thank you, i yield myself the balance of my time. >> recognized. >> madam speaker, before i begin my formal remarks in closing, i want to say one thing for the record. i have great respect for all my friends on the other side of the aisle. aim sure they're voting their convictions. so when i vote mine, please don't imply i'm dock it for my
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political party. i'm dock it because it's what i believe is right. i do believe i can defend both the president and the constitution of the united states and i think that's exactly what i am dock. madam speaker, can i not oppose this rule strongly enough. the process we saw leading up to it today was a complete charade. it was a closed process, an unfair process and a rushed process. and it could only have ever had one logical pre-determined ending. throughout it all, the majority trampled on minority rights. they refused to call witnesses with relevant first-hand knowledge. they relied on hearsay news reports to make their case. they denied republicans the right to hold the minority hearing day. and they refused the president of the united states his due process rights in the committee that was actually conducting an investigation -- the impeachment process and investigating him.
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and in the end, what was the result? articles of impeachment based on an event that never happened, a purported quid pro quo that did not exist. aid that was allegedly withheld that in reality was never withheld at all. and a narrative of intent based on nothing more than fantasy. madam speaker, we deserve better than this. impeachment is the most consequential act the house of representatives can undertake. it must not and cannot be based on a flawed process. it cannot come at the expense of minority rights or due process to the accused. it cannot be based on a vendetta against the president, if the majority has pursued since the day it was elected and it cannot be based on nothing more than spin and hearsay. i oppose this rule and i oppose the flawed and unfair process.
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madam speaker, it's a very solemn vote all that of this will cast. i want to end by number one thanking my good friend, the chairman of the rules committee for conducting the kind of hearing he conducted yesterday. but i also want to underscore again, we are very violently opposed to the process, very strongly opposed to the rule, think this is a charade and been very unfair. so madam speaker, i urge my colleagues to vote no on the previous question, no on the rule, and no on the underlying measure and i yield back the balance of my time. >> gentleman from massachusetts. >> i yield myself the remaining time. >> the gentleman is recognized. >> let me thank my friend mr. cole for his kind word. i appreciate the fact that he respects this institution. but madam speaker, let me say again what happened here. the president withheld congressionally approved military aid to a country under
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siege to extract a personal political favor. that's a cold, hard fact. the question before us comes down to this, should a president be allowed to ask a foreign nation to interfere in an american election? you know i remember my first political experience as a middle schooler in 1972, read leaving leaflets at the homes of potential voters. you remembering them to vote for george mcgovern. i remember what an honor it was to ask people to support him even though i was too young to vote myself. what a privilege it was later in life to ask supporters in my own campaigns. i have been a part of winning campaigns and losing ones, too. people i thought would be great presidents like senator mcgovern were never given that chance. make no mistake, i was disappointed. but i accepted it. i would take losing an election any day of the week when the american people render that
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verdict. but i will never be okay if other nations decide our leaders for us. and the president of the united states is rolling out the welcome mat for that kind of foreign interference. to my republican friends, imagine any democratic president sitting in the oval office, president obama, president clinton, any of them, would your answer here still be the same? no one should be allowed to use the powers of the presidency to undermine our elections. period. this isn't about siding with your team. i didn't swear an oath to defend a political party. i took an oath to uphold the constitution of the united states of america. and when i vote yes on this rule and the underlying articles, my conscience will be clear. i ask all of my colleagues to search their souls before casting their votes. i ask them all to stand up for our democracy, to stand up for our constitution.
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mrs. madam speaker, i urge a yes on the rule and i yield back the balance of my time. i rule the previous question on the resolution. >> the question is on ordering the previous question on the resolution. all in favor say aye. >> aye. >> opposed say no. >> no! >> in an opinion of the chair the ayes have it. gentleman of oklahoma. >> thank you, madam speaker, i request the ayes and nays. >> those favoring a vote by the ayes and nays will rise. a sufficient number having risen, the face in and ayes have recorded. they will rerecord by electronic device. the chair will refuse five minutes the minimum time on adoption of the resolution. this will be a 15-minute vote. >> reporter: all right, so there is another procedural vote. 15 minutes the members will have
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a chance to vote electronically manned the next motion will be to go ahead and approve the rules committee and then they can actually begin the real six-hour debate. >> that's right. all they they certainly have been talking right now in the last few hours not so much about the rule but about whether or not president trump should be impeached. we saw a number of democrats giving very strong cases as to why they think the president has abused his office and ob instructed congress. we saw a lot of republicans talking how they don't think this process is fair. how president trump did nothing wrong. so even though they weren't supposed to be debating the rule, they were in actual actuality debating the rules and jerrold nadler, the chairman of the house judiciary committee and his counterpart from georgia take over the debate. >> that's right. i think this was a good preview of what we will see and a good preview of what we've seen already and the two different worlds in many ways democrats
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and republicans in terms of what they want to talk about. what they see as happening here. republicans, of course, saying they feel shut out of the process. they feel like the president essentially did nothing wrong in that the democrats are trying to undo an election. some of the democrats amiel to history. joe kennedy got there in you know addressed it to his chairman. debbie wasserman schultz did the same thing, she wants her grandkids to look at her favorably, look at the moment she had in this historic time, favorably. so, yeah, i this i this is going to be what we see. very partisan divide on display here and a partisan divide i think is also reflected in the greater population. >> john, it's almost unanimous on the republican side. completely unanimous, almost unanimous on the democratic side. >> and so at the end of the day, you'll see partisan votes, at the end of the day, we'll have both articles of impeachment
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approved by the house. will you have two democrats vogt on one article, three on the second article. jerry gould of maine says he will split his. justen the amash will side with the democrats. both parties will spin this as bipartisan because they got two votes from somebody else. strip that say way. this is a very partisan day as america makes history. watching the debates so far, it's been interesting, both the democratic speakers in favor of the rules, since we're debating the rules right now the republican speakers against it, one or two exception from safe districts, leadership allies to make the case to get the process going. it will be interesting to me later as they allocate this time, you heard republicans complaining, we want more time. most house republicans are safe. they want to go out and say no for some of these democrats, it actually is a tough vote. they've decided to vote yes on these articles of impeachment. today after the leadership returned to speak on the floor or at their home district be
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their message. >> one thing that struck me this morning is that you heard the republicans complaining about access to committee materials and saying they weren't provided everything they needed. but you did not hear anything from republicans about the blanket denial of witnesses and documents from the white house. and from the state department, that was not raised. so it seems to me, an argument that we're going to hear more of as the democrats speak about what they were trying to do when they are charged with denying people everything that they wanted to make a decision. they'll say, you know, just ask the white house why we didn't get those people, why we didn't get those documents, those e-mails from the state department we have asked for. >> we'll take a quick break. it's a historic day here in the nation's capital, much more of our special coverage right after this. no matter how much life pushes us around... ...she keeps us centered.
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ending the debate to end the rules, excuse me, they're voting to end the debate on the rules on the impeachment. rules and then the actual debate about the impeachment, itself, will begin, obviously, we'll bring all of that to you live. i want to go to dana bash who has been talking to you, members of congress and republicans all warning. >> reporter: anderson, that's right. one of the members of the democratic leadership in the house i spoke with just while the debate was going on is james clyburn. around we were talking about what we expect to see later today which is probably unanimously republicans voting no on impeachment. here's what he said about what we should take from that when it comes to the gop. so when you go forward with these votes, it is possible, probable, that some democrats are going to vote no, but it's fairly unlikely that you're going to get any republican to come on board.
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how much of a signal does it send if it's a partisan vote? >> i think the american people understand this republican party has given itself to this person. they are no longer a republican party. they are trump's party. >> reporter: and he said when we see those votes taken and republicans in lock step, it will cement the notion of the republican party being the trump party, which we've obviously seen happen over the past three years. this will be kind of a recorded vote on that issue. one of the top republicans on the floor, you heard him pushing back against that notion. it was very interesting. tom cole, who is the ranking republican, so he was speaking a lot. he said, don't question whether or not i'm doing this just because i can't stand up to the president. i'm doing there because i don't think it's right and you know i
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believe this is the appropriate way to move forward so he didn't actually adhere, he's heard other democrats make that argument that this is all politics as if they don't have the guts, frankly, to stand up to the president. >> that is a real dynamic going on here today. it will play out as we see the votes go down. >> yeah. dana, thanks very much. we will come back to you and obviously come back as more congress people get up and talk about their view on impeachment. jeff toobin, so far, it has really been all procedural. there will be six hours of actual debate about the impeachment, itself. >> reporter: right, all hope, most of the members now are already talking about the merits of the impeachment not as much about the procedural matters. you know, the question is who has the high ground here? who speaks for the constitution? the democrats are saying that you know this is an abuse of
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power. this is exactly why we have impeachment and the republicans are saying that the process a a per version of the impeachment and that's, you know, we'll see what happens. >> they're saying more than that. that's not fair. that's not a fair analysis. they're saying, yes, they are saying it's the process, but they're also saying that you heard several say even if you accept everything that the democrats say, this doesn't rise to the level of impeachment. we don't think they've proven their case. it's not just a matter of process. they're saying that these actions are not serious enough to be impeachable and they're also saying they haven't proven those actions and they haven't given time to prove the second article to run through the proper course of the congress going to the court and having the court arbitrate whether the president should turn over these documents. so to say it's not process is unfair. >> although, just to be accurate, you are right. they are definitely saying that the underlying events don't justify impeachment as well, but they are primarily at this point
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making a procedural argument. >> they're making a procedural argument because this is a rule and that's a procedural argument. >> i think to senator son tar rum's point, what they're not saying is the call was perfect. they're not really defending the actual call, itself. >> just because the call isn't perfect doesn't mean it's impeachable. they can't defend the president's actions, because they're indefensible. the arguments, most of my former colleagues are making have largely been procedural. they're not on substance, because they can't talk. the president did solicit a foreign power used his office, you know, for his political benefit and then conditioned the foreign assistance. you know, as a white house -- >> i don't think most republicans accept that. i don't accept that. >> if you or i did that as a member of congress, we used our office to call a foreign head of government for a political purpose. i guarantee not only an ethics committee, you'd have the department of justice crawling
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up your back side, no doubt about it. i aguarantee it. >> with all due respect, every single interaction with a foreign government has a political purpose. you are drawing lines here. i understand, you can say he crossed the line. fine, but the idea that there is no politics involved with communications -- >> saying there is no politics involved. you are missing at least one point here, and that is there happens to be a second article of impeachment they're going to debate and as a former senator, i would appreciate the current senators would debate this in a full blown trial to actually evaluate these different measures. with the obstruction of congress aspec, you can make this abuse of power being perhaps too much of a leap of faith. but obstruction of congress relies on you looking at two things. how many documents were requested? how many were provided? how much testimony was asked for? how much was provided. in that respect, that's more than simply a procedural aspect. that's also a substantive and i am always surprised to know that members of congress would say a member of the executive branch
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they thumb their nose. >> that's not what we're saying. i don't think that's what any republican is saying. >> that itself not what jonathan churley said. what republicans are saying this is, there is a process by which you go through to determine whether the president is obstructing congress. and that is through the courts. when there is a debate between the two branches of government, have you the umpire. which is the court. gow to the court and you make the case before the court as to whether there is in fact -- >> are you saying that, it's a red herring argument that the republicans are making. because that hadn't been the case in past impeachments. so like you didn't have to go through the court to get people from the nixon administration to testify. you didn't have to go to the court to get the people from the clinton administration to testify. they told them to cooperate. so republicans have created this idea that somehow the democrats are obligated to do that they're not. the reality is a president should be making people available. and he would be making people
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available if they were going to help his case. >> jeff toobin, you make the point that this, what the democrats are calling obstruction of congress, it is unprecedented that there are always a debate and sometimes it goes to court about individual documents. >> right. it's an issue of scale. i mean there have always been debates about whether certain witness can testify. whether secretary of some department can testify about a conversation with the president. is that covered by executive privilege? it's perfectly appropriate for, to have arguments over that what has never happened before the you've had a white house counsel write an 8-page letter that says we are not cooperating at all. we are not talking, we are not supplying witnesses. we are not supplying documents or e-mails. that's why we have a constitutional crisis here. in addition, the other point that is important is that this argument, oh, let's just go to court and spend the next several months. the problem with it is that what he has been doing is interfering
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in the 2020 election, so if the democrats are forced to go to court, they have to let him continue with the next segment. >> what is he doing interfering right now with the 2020 election? >> oh, we don't know. >> we have been through we don't know for two-and-a-half -- with russia and it's been debunked. >> what we do know -- >> he asked china to interfere and asked ukraine again on the front lawn of the white house. >> as you heard, they have to, the president believes you may not believe it, if the president believes there is corruption going on at the very highest levels, with certain members of the democratic party and in the prior administration. and he wants that to be looked into. >> him asking china to investigate the bidens, you are saying that's a legitimate thing? >> all i know is that both in the case of ukraine and the case of china, hunter biden, simply because he was the president's
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son, made a boat load of money. >> that's not all you know. you know there is an election coming up. you know that joe biden is running against the president and you know that this will have an impact on that election. >> by the way, that itself same argument richard nixon made about larry o'bryant larry o'brien made a boat load of money, i don't like larry o'bryant, he didn't follow the probably cause. this is the point here, that's why it's abuse of power. we have all kind of institutions to do exactly what you think should be done. >> institutions like the fbi that just got skewered by the fisa court. >> the answer is on the floor of the fbi. >> so the problem is we've seen a pattern where the president has been unjustly accused and we've seen again by the horowitz report, that the intentional efforts to hurt --? so the president is going to ukraine because he can't trust the fbi to investigate the
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former vice president of the united states? he trusts the corrupt regime of the ukraine, which he says it's corrupt? >> do you know how dangerous that is? >> you know how dangerous it is for the fbi to to what they did? . >> excuse ne do you want to put faith in foreign governments to investigate? >> i think any president who has been under siege who has through this fisa, through the report, by horowitz, has justifiably been -- >> intellectually your argument doesn't make sense. you say he can't trust the fbi, so of course, it's natural, he would go to ukraine to launch an investigation against the former vice president of the united states, there were plenty of people in the united states in the government who could investigate the former vice president if it was legitimate. he knows it's not legitimate, so he's going to ukraine to say they're going to investigate. he doesn't care in there is an investigation. >> that's another point that deserves some emphasis here.
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is that the president has no interest in an actual investigation of hunter biden or the bidens. what he wants is an announcement of an investigation, which he can do politically. >> that's what some people say. we don't have that from the president. >> that's what the evidence was. that's what some people testified. we don't know that to be the case. >> but some people did swear under oath under penalty of perjurys. >> the evidence is available because the president has cut off access to any other evidence. but one thing i want to try to make clear here, is that you know we have, there is a very much a good faith debate about whether the president's conduct is impeachable. >> that is a matter of opinion. it's a matter of interpretation of the constitution and that's a very appropriate thing. but what we should not have a debate about is what happened. the facts. everyone is entitled. as senator money hasn't liked to
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say, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. they're not entitled to their own facts. the idea there is an alternative view of the facts is a mistake. >> again i disagree with that there is, we don't have direct evidence. we have indirect evidence. i understand you say, well, we should get the direct evidence from the president. that's where i think you have to take the time to do that. >> when you say investigating members of the democratic party hunter biden was not a leader in the democratic party. hunter biden was somebody that went and did this on his own. there is not one shred of evidence that joe biden did anything to help him with that or did anything because he had that job. so you're just mixing it altogether and suggesting something nefarious happened here. >> from the president's perspective, a person he trusts, rudy guiliani has made a case that there is evidence. you can say that's not true. it is true. i'm telling you this is what the
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president believes. >> there are constitutional consequences when a president acts on a conspiracy theory and goes outside the normal -- >> we have all sorts of evidence of conspiracy theories in this russia investigation that actually turned out to be true. >> you have to focus on actually why we're here, senator santorum. here's why. it's an impeachment. which means only the president can be subject to that. hunter biden is not the president. joe biden is not the president. not for lack of trying, quite frankly. so you have this focus on him. what we're focusing on is whether or not these two articles of impeachment are viable enough. you are asserting this there is no sound argument. >> i didn't say there was no sound argument. >> i'm going to finish my point, no grounds for debating there could be an abuse of power because there is lack of direct evidence. efrd. you know it's a circular argument by i'm not giving you the very thing for to you require to make this claim stick. >> that is not what happens. a brief reminder, if i will, of
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the organizational chart the fbi falls under it. if you read page two and three of the op-ed the president put forth on the eve of an impeachment vote. you note he is saying he has never acted against the interests of the united states of america. if you take this position by saying as anderson was talking about, there is no reason to go to a occupation agency to try to investigate alleged corruption and you are going to go to a foreign power. isn't that the very essence of saying i don't believe in the very institutions that i oversee. if you don't like that why are you the head of the executive branch of government? >> number one, there is legitimate concerns of what went on in the fbi in 2016 to 2017 and it's laid out clearly bring theway it's bipartisan. aim as much concerned looking at that report with hillary clinton and jim comey as donald trump. there are serious issues that everybody zealand seems to be glossing however.
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the president looks at it from that perspective. it's a legitimate concern he has. by the way, i agree with jeffrey, i think the democrat versus a plausible case to make that he obstructed power. i don't agree with it. i think they're wrong i don't think the evidence supports that i do believe contrary to you that there is a procedure by which you determine whether the president is obstructing justice and you have to go through the court first. we're talking two cases. this is not a long history. but what we have is a very long ristory. when the president demanded things, he can say no, there is a remedy. >> there the an issue of scale but venue. george washington made clear there was something special about impeachment power to ask for things it ordinarily wouldn't ask for. in that case something to do with the j treaty. he said the house has no role, the senate asks for it, final. but if you ask for something with regard to the impeachment of me, then we would have to
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turn it over. the issue is not simply this is fast and furious again. this is an issue of the legislative brand. when it comes to impeachment, there aren't real rules in the congress except that the house has sole impeachment power. and traditionally, sorry, traditionally, our president's understood, there is something special about an impeachment request. trump is the first to stall every request. >> what are you doing is putting this in context. this is different because of context. i you this you need to give the president the benefit of the doubt of context. because for the last three years, context, this house of representatives has been trying to go at well, the democrats in the last year, but really since the beginning have been trying to destroy this president. the mueller investigation, all of these rumors, all of which now have been completely debunked. the reality is, the reality is
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that they have been trying to impeach this president since the beginning. >> i was there. >> i was there. >> there were a hand. of democrats you know, tlaib, you know, al green, a few of them are issuing articles. that was a handful. most democrats i think were done with impeachment after the mueller investigation. we're only here because of the president's reckless behavior. >> the mueller investigation. that's not how it worked. the democrats can't start the mueller investigation. that was done by the doj. i don't understand how they're getting blamed for that are they anti-trump? yes. were you and your republican cohorts anti-clinton from the second he stepped foot into office, yes? >> i don't know any went fcallig for impeachment of bill clinton from the beginning. >> we end up with this ridiculous lengthy investigation
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of ken starr of bill clinton's life in an effort to try to impeach him. if point is i think we have to look at where we are now. whatever people's partisan positions are. and say, is this an impeachable offense? and i think that i think that it is, i think if it was barack obama you would think it is. >> just in terms of what we are going to see from now, so they've had this vote on ending the debate about the impeachment rules. >> can we ask charlie what's going on here? >> they just completed the debate on the rule on the previous question. now they're going to move on the substance of the articles of impeachment. i guess article 11st. article 2. so that's what's going to happen. so we're going five or six hours to debate. >> is this now the final vote on the rule? >> this is the final vote on the rule. two votes. you had to vote on the previous question and the rule. as soon as this is completed. which would be momentarily. they will then move to the substantive debate and it will
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be split evenly between the -- >> how much time will each person have to talk? >> well, the committee members on the judiciary committee will probably have more time than rank and file members who will have less time. so, if it's six hours of debate, three hours republicans three hours democrat, they usually divide up leadership time. they're saying i heard somebody say 50 second each. non-committee members. i think in the six hours, usually they reserve time in the end for the leaders and speakers. both side. so that the rank and the committee, as charlie said will have priority and then the rest of the members, usually the last hour is for leadership. >> this is a dumb question. is from a sign-up sheet? >> all right. >> somebody is keeping track. >> so a representative says i want to talk, they're told when they can talk? >> and whoever is control the controlling that. it could be a chairman, a ranking member, the leadership in this case, because it's such a big deal. they're going to decide who they
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will let speak or not. >> but the people controlling the debate we do know are going to be the chairman and ranking members of the judiciary committee. jerry nadler for the democrats. mitch mcconnell for the republicans. just in terms of big pick. it is a remarkable day. it's been commented on a lot. how do you see it compared to sort of what we know from impeachments from the past and history viewed those impeachments?
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so there were debates in both parties. what is different now i think is the sense i'm getting. we're going to watch the debate. my sense is that there is no debate in the republican party right now. >> i don't think there is a debate in the democratic party. >> trump district democrats have been saying about why they're voting for impeachment. and the fact that at least one of them is going to vote for one of the articles of impeachment. i think tha there has been a debate in the democratic party. i think that's one reason why nancy pelosi managed the system like she did.
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>> reporter: it's interesting, the next minute or so, we should wrap up this vote agreeing to the rules resolution, by allows a full debate over these two articles of impeachment to go forward. >> that debate should be beginning very, very soon. jerry nadler, doug collins, the >> adam schiff the chairman of the house intelligence committee which really shepherded this investigation through will also take over for democrats for the second three hours. they'll go back and forth,back and forth between democrats and republicans ail thoulthough the will be kept even. it is interesting, one of the things that has been noted is that normally an impeachment
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goes through the house judiciary committee. but in this case, adam schiff chaired it from the house intelligence committee. there's a lot of speculation as to why that was. i asked a member of the committee why that would be. he said that's because the whistleblower was an intelligence community whistleblower. he came forward with the official complaint about president trump allegedly abusing his office. >> that's true and i think there may also be some internal democratic politics going on here which is that when jerry nadler ran his hearings months ago on impeachment and he had corey lewandowski up before them and it didn't go so well and he seemed to lose control of the committee. one of the ironies of all of this is that adam schiff came to congress by defeating a
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republican congressman rogan who was an impeachment manager for bill clinton's impeachment. when he came to congress, he said, well, he forgot about his home district. schiff was very impressive in his committee, had complete control of his committee. the flip side of that is he is a favorite target of republicans and of the president. the republicans tried to censure him on the floor of the congress and that did not occur. so he's going to be attacked on the floor, although there are rules about that. but he's not a favorite of the president. the president has kind of been live tweeting this impeachment. when schiff appears, i don't know if he's going to be able to control himself. he's got nicknames for adam schiff, as you know. he is pelosi's choice. >> we have heard legitimate
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defenses of president trump of there being enough question, enough doubt as to whether or not this should be an impeachable offense, trying to force subpoenas in terms of trying to get witness testimony and evidence. but one of the things we hear from house republicans so often are just misrepresentations, lies about what happened. i don't know if many people remember the show popup video on vh-1 this would provide facts on music videos. i wish we could do popup video because we're about to hear a torrent of lies about what the president actually did. >> we did not have washington this morning. you have mcgovern and ranking member cole, two old school
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washington politicians who do it with respect and do it as bipartisan as possible. that's about to end. we're about to get into nadler and schiff, who are the republican opponents. >> let's listen in. >> the resolution is adopted. without objection, the motion to reconsider laid on the table. >> now they're going to go forward with the real debate over these two articles of impeachment. on that resolution there were two democrats who voted with the republicans on that resolution to suspend the whole thing. obviously the republicans lost, but they did manage to pick up two democrats. >> we're going to watch that throughout. we're going to have to get the actual roll call. justin amash is voting with the democrats here. to jake's point, some irony,
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hypocrisy in the republicans saying we didn't get to called a am schiff as a fain the committ. if you can counter the 17 witnesses who said withheld the white house meeting, withheld aid, demanded investigation of a debunked conspiracy theory, the crowdstrike thing, demanded investigation of hunter biden. if -- the white house has refused to give those documents. >> let's listen. >> -- house resolution 755. the clerk will report the resolution. >> house calendar 755 resolved that donald john trump, president of the united states, is impeached for high crimes and misdemeanors and that the
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following articles of impeachment be exhibited to the united states senate. articles of impeachment exhibited by the house of representatives of the united states of america in the name of itself and of the people of the united states of america against donald john trump, president of the united states of america in support of evidence against him for high crimes and misdemeanors. article one, abuse of power. the constitution provides that the house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment and that the president shall be removed from office for and conviction of treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. in his conduct of the office of the president of the united states and in violation of his oath to faithfully execute and defend the constitution of the united states, in violation of his constitutional duty, donald trump has abused the powers of
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the presidency in that using the powers of his high office, president trump solicited the affairs of the foreign government ukraine in the 2020 presidential election. president trump also sought to pressure the government of ukraine to take these steps by conditioning united states acts of significant value to ukraine on its public announcement of these investigations. president trump used the powers of the mpresidency and undermind the integrity of the united states democratic process.
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he thus ignored and injured the interests of the nation. president trump engaged in this scheme or course of conduct through the following means. one, president trump acting both directly and through his agents within and outside the united states government corruptly solicited the government of ukraine to publicly announce investigations into a political opponent joe biden and a discredited theory promoted by russia alleging that ukraine rather than russia interfered in the 2016 united states presidential election. two, with the same corrupt motives, president trump acting both directly and through his agents within and outside the united states government conditioned two official acts on the public announcements that he had requested, the release of $391 million of united states taxpayer funds that congress had appropriated on a bipartisan basis for the purpose of providing assistance to ukraine
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to oppose russian aggression and which president trump had ordered suspended and a head of state meeting at the white house which the president of ukraine sought to demonstrate continued support for the government of ukraine in the face of russian aggression. three, based with the public revelation of his actions president trump ultimately released the military and security assistance to the government of ukraine but has persisted in openly and corruptly soliciting ukraine to undertake investigations for his personal political benefit. these actions were consistent with president trump's previous invitations of foreign interference in united states elections. in all of this, president trump abused the powers of the presidency by ignoring and injurying national security and other vital interests to obtain a personal political benefit. he has also betrayed the nation by abusing his high office by enlisting a foreign power to corrupt democratic elections.
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president trump has demonstrated that he will remain a threat to national security and the constitution if allowed to remain in office. president trump thus warrants impeachment and trial, removal from office and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the united states. article two, obstruction of congress. the constitution provide that the house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment and the president shall be removed from office for treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. in his conduct of office of president of the united states and in violation of his constitutional oath to preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the united states and in violation of his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully
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executed. donald trump has directed the unprecedented defiance of subpoenas issued by the house of representatives pursuant to its sole power of impeachment. president trump has abused the powers of the presidency in a manner offensive to and subversive of the constitution in that the house of representatives has engaged in an impeachment inquiry focused on president trump's corrupt solicitation of the government of ukraine to interfere in the 2020 united states presidential election. as part of this impeachment inquiry, the committee served subpoenas seeking documents and testimony deemed vital to the inquiry from various agencies and offices and current and former officials. in response without lawful cause or excuse, president trump directed executive branch agencies, offices and officials not to comply with those subpoenas. president trump thus interposed
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the powers of the presidency against the lawful subpoenas of the house of representatives and assumed to himself functions and judgments necessary to the exercise of the sole power of impeachment vested by the constitution in the house of representatives. president trump abused the powers of his high office through the following means. one, directing the white house to defy a lawful subpoena by withholding the production of documents sought therein by the committees. two, directing other executive branch agencies and offices to defy lawful subpoenas and withhold the production of documents and record from the committees, in response to which the department of state, office of management and budget, department of energy and department of defense refused to produce a single document or record. three, directing current and former executive branch officials not to cooperate with the committees, in response to which nine administration officials defied subpoenas for
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testimony. namely mick mulvaney, john blair, michael ellis, michael duffy. these actions were consistent with president trump's previous efforts to undermine united states government investigations into foreign interference in united states elections. through these actions president trump sought the right to determine the propriety, scope and nature of the inquiry into his own conduct as well as the prerogative to deny information to the house of representatives and the exercise of its sole power of impeachment. in the history of the republic, no president has ever ordered the complete defiance of an impeachment inquiry or sought to obstruct the ability of the house of representatives to investigate high crimes and misdemeanors. this abuse of office served to cover up the president's own repeated misconduct and to seize
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and control the power of impeachment and thus to nullify a vital constitutional safeguard vested solely in the house of representatives. in all of this president trump has acted in a manner contrary to his trust as president and subversive of constitutional government to the great prejudice of the cause of law and justice. wherever president trump by such conduct has demonstrated that he will remain a threat to the constitution if allowed to remain in office and has acted in a manner grossly incompatible with self-governance and the rule of law. to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the united states. >> pursuant to house resolution 767, the amendment in the nature of a substitute recommended by the committee on resolution is
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adopted. the resolution shall be debatable for six hours equally divided. the gentleman from new york, mr. nadler and the gentleman from georgia mr. collins each will control three hours. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from new york, mr. nadler. >> i ask unanimous consent that all legislators should have five days -- >> without objection. >> i now yield one minute to the distinguished speaker of the house. >> gentle lady is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding, for his tremendous leadership in helping us honor the constitution of the united states. i also extend my gratitude to chairman schiff who will be presiding later in the day.
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my colleagues, this morning and every morning when we come together, members rise and pledge allegiance to the flag. every day all across america children in school, members of the military, officials and those civically engaged also pledge allegiance to the flag. let us recall what that pledge says. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic, to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under god, in indivisible with liberty and justin fjustice for all. we gather today in this terple
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temple of democracy. no member regardless of party or politics comes to congress to impeach a president, but every one of us as our first act as a member of congress stood on this historic house floor before our beautiful american flag and raised our hands in this sacred oath. i do solemnly swear that i will support and defend the constitution of the united states against all enemies, foreign and domestic, so help me god. for 230 years members have taken that sacred oath which makes us custodians of the constitution. when our founders declared independence and established a new nation, they crafted a system of government unlike one ever seen before, a republic starting with the sacred words we the people.
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for centuries americans have fought and died to defend democracy for the people. but very sadly now, our founders' vision of a republic is under threat from actions from the white house. that is why today as speaker of the house i solemnly and sadly open the debate on the impeachment of the president of the united states. if we do not act now, we would be derelict in our duty. it is tragic that the president's reckless actions make impeachment necessary. he gave us no choice. what we are discussing today is the established fact that the president violated the constitution. it is a matter of fact that the president is an ongoing threat to our national security and the integrity of our elections, the basis of our democracy. hundreds of historians, legal scholars and formal prosecutors regardless of party have stated
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that the president committed impeachable offenses. today is a national civics lesson, though a sad one. i submit these documents for the record and commend them for students to study. >> without objection, so ordered. >> thank you, madam speaker. what we are discussing today is established fact that the president, again, violated the constitution. as a matter of fact that the president is an ongoing threat to our national security. and the testimony of decorated war heros, distinguished diplomats and patriotic career public servants, some of the president's own appointees over the past weeks have told us this. the president used the power of his public office to obtain an improper personal political benefit at the expense of america's national security. when a president weakens a democratic ally that is advancing american security interests by fighting an
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american adversary, the president weakens america. this abuse of power also jeopardizes the integrity of our elections. all americans agree that american voters should choose our president, not some foreign government. the founders understood that it is profoundly corrosive to invite interference in our elections. as george washington, the nation's patriot under whose gaze we stand today warned, history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government. george washington. sadly, the american people have witnessed further wrongs of the president which necessitate the second article of impeachment, obstruction of congress president when the president's wrongdoing was revealed, he launched an unprecedented, indiscriminate and categorical
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campaign of defiance and obstruction. never before in the history of our nation have we seen a president declare and act as if he is above the law. the president goes even so far as to say and act on this absurdity when he says article two says i can do whatever i want. no, it doesn't. that recklessness is a profound violation of the constitution and our republic, which endured because of our system of separation of power, three coequal branches, each a check and balance on the other, a republic, again, if we can keep it. the founders' great fear of a rogue or corrupt president is the very reason why they enshrined impeachment in the constitution. as one founder the william davy warned, a president might spare no efforts or means whatever to
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get himself reelected. another founder george mason insisted that the president who procured his appointment in the first instance through improper and corrupt acts might repeat his guilt and return to power. we in congress must stand up and make clear to the american people and to all people that this body still stands by the principles enshrined in the constitution and defended by generations of americans. last week an observance of the 75th anniversary of the battle of the bulge, members traveled to that hallowed ground to express our gratitude to the heros of freedom who sacrificed everything to secure victory of freedom over tyranny, not just for america but for the world. the veterans of that battle who were there in their 90s told us
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how after the war was won, the europeans would ask why did you risk us, you don't know us and give your lives to save us, we're not americans. and our men would say we came here to fight for you not because you are americans, because we are americans. as our beloved chairman elijah cummings and oversight committee share, our north star, said when announcing his support for this action, quote, when the history books are written about this tumultuous era, i i want them to show that i was among those in the house of representatives who stood up to lawlessness and tyranny. he also said almost prophetically when we are dancing with the angels, the question will be what did we do to make sure we kept our democracy intact. elijah, as you know, has since passed on. now he is dancing with the
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angels. and i know that he and all of us here are very proud of the moral courage of members who honor the vision of our founders for a republic, the sacrifice of our men and women in uniform to defend it and the aspirations of our children to live freely within it. today we are here to defend democracy for the people. may god bless america. i yield back the balance of my time. >> the gentle lady yields back. [ applause ] >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. and we are here today to enter into a debate that should surprise no one. this has not been a surprise and
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it's not even something that we would have not thought about. from the very moment that the majority party in this house won, the inevitability that we would be here today was only a matter of what date they would schedule it, nothing else. in fact, how it even began to look even further was on september 24th the speaker announced an impeachment inquiry before even seeing the call transcript that we're going to hear so much about today. you know, it's not about what this body can do and this constitutional oath. there's been a lot of constitutional and founders thrown around and will be all day today. the founders were very concerned about a partisan impeachment in which politics of the majority who have their strength can do what they want to do irregardless of any facts. i do not believe no matter what was said today and what has been said, this is not a solemn occasion. when you go looking for something for three years, you
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ought to be excited when you found it. i was thinking about it. why do we keep calling this a solemn occasion when you've been wanting to do this since the president was elected. it hit me. now i know. the reason they wanted to is now they're realizing what i told them and have been telling them for the last few weeks, the clock and the calendar are terrible masters. they do not care about anything except getting the time done and the calendar fixed. they do not care about facts, they do not care about time. one day the clock and the calendar will hang along this body in a very detrimental way. how do i know this? one of the members said on the night she was sworn in we're going to impeach. you know the rest. al green said i'm concerns if we don't impeach this president, he
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will get reelected. they said we can't beat him if we don't impeach him. there's a reason behind this impeachment. even spoeaker pelosi said it would be dangerous to leave to voters to determine whether president trump stays in office. really? it would be dangerous to leave it to the voters. ly tell you right now we on the republican side have no problem taking our case to the majority too and to the people of this country because they elected donald trump and it is a matter for the voters. it has trampled everything this house believes in. i said it yesterday. i will fight this on process, which has been deplorable to use a word of the majority. it has been awful. the calendar and the clock make it impressive that we actually do it quickly.
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we don't care about rules because the chairman gets to determine what is relevant. wow, that's pretty good, let the accuser determine what is relevant to the one being accused. the people of america see through this. the people of america understand due process and they understand when it is being trampled in the people's house. it's also not a matter of process. it's a matter of actual facts. what we found here today is a president who did not do as being charged. they had to go to abuse of power. the call itself, the two parties say no pressure. nothing was ever done to get the money. in fact, they didn't even know the money was held. there is something that very much bothers me about the facts. there were five meetings in which there was never a linkage made. there is one witness depended on
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over 600 times in the majority's report that had to say after questioning that was my presumption of what was happening. this is a poll tested impeachment on what actually sells to the american people. today is going to be a lot of things. what it is not is fair. what it is not is about the truth. what is true today and i just heard it just a moment ago in the articles themselves is, well, is it the president weakened, a foreign leader? the truth is the actual attack by the majority on president zelensky. if he was not pressured, their house of cards falls. it's already fell. but if we can't show pressure, then we've have to call him a liar, a world leader, or we have to make up names to call him.
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that's exactly what happened in the judiciary committee when a member of the majority actually said they're complaining to a battered wife. that is below the dignity of this body to take a world leader and when he doesn't make your case for you, to belittle him. president trump actually did give them offensive weapons. president trump did nothing wrong. we're going to talk about that all day long today. we went on process and we went on facts. why? because the american people will see through this. before i close, i will have to recognize that even the senate, the minority leader in the senate recognizes that the house did not do their job because he can't make the case to his own members so he's having to ask for witnesses and more time. i thought it hilarious that the minority leader in the senate went out and did a press conference and said they denied my witnesses, they denied my requests. welcome to the club, mr. schumer. that's exactly what's happened over here for the last three
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months. so today we're going to talk a lot about impeachment. we're going to talk a lot about our president and we're going to talk about two articles of impeachment, abuse of power. the president did nothing wrong in this issue. then they're going to talk about obstruction of congress. that's like petulant children. the clock and the calendar are terrible masters and the majority will own that problem today because to the clock and the calendar facts don't matter. the promises to the base matter and stood a promise kept for the majority. nod not a surprise, a fact. with that i'll reserve. >> gentleman reserves. gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i macon sy consume.
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the first article charges that the president used his public office to coerce a foreign government into attacking his political rival. the second article charges that the president took extreme and unprecedented steps to obstruct our investigation into his conduct. taken together, the two articles charge that president trump placed his private political interests above our national security, above our elections and above our system of checks and balances. after months of investigation, there can be no serious debate about the evidence at hand. on july 25th, when he spoke to president zelensky of ukraine, president trump had the upper hand. the president through his agents had halready demanded that ukraine announce an investigation of his political opponents. ukraine needed our help, both military aid, which had been appropriated by congress because
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of our security interests, and an oval office meeting to show the world that the united states continues to stand with ukraine against russian aggression. president trump should have been focused on the interests of the american people on that call. instead he prioritized his private political interests. the president trump asked president zelensky for a favor. he wanted ukraine to announce two bogus investigations, one into former vice president biden, then his leading opponent in the 2020 election, and another to advance a conspiracy theory that ukraine, not russia, attacked our elections in 2016. neither request was premised on any legitimate national security or foreign policy interest. one was to help president trump conceal the truth about the 2016 election. the other was intended to help him gain an advantage in the 2020 election. after the call, president trump
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ratcheted up the pressure. he deployed his private attorney and other agents, some acting far outside the regular channels of diplomacy, to make his desires clear. there would be no aid and no meeting until ukraine announced the sham investigations. to our founding generation, abuse of power was a specific, well-defined offense. a president may not misuse the powers of the presidency to obtain an improper personal benefit. the evidence shows that president trump did exactly that. for this alone, he should be impeached. but the first article also identifies two aggravating factors. when president trump conditioned military aid on a personal favor, he harmed america's national security. and when he demanded that a foreign government target his democratic political rival, he took steps to corrupt our next election. to the founders, these offenses clearly merited removal from
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office. the president faces a second article of impeachment for his efforts to obstruct our investigation of this misconduct. the constitution grants the sole power of impeachment to the house of representatives. within our system of checks and balances, the president may not decide for himself what constitutes a valid impeachment inquiry. nor may he ignore lawful subpoenas or direct others to do so. many presidents including president trump have asserted privileges and other objections to specific subpoenas, but only president trump has ordered the categorical defiance of a congressional investigation, the automatic rejection of all subpoenas. the president is not above the law and he should be impeached for this as well. congress cannot wait for the next election to address this misconduct. president trump has demonstrated a clear pattern of wrongdoing. this is not the first time he has solicited foreign interference in an election, has been exposed and has attempted
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to obstruct the resulting investigation. we cannot rely on the next election as a remedy for presidential misconduct when the president threatens the very integrity of that election. he has shown us he will continue to put his selfish interest above the country. we must act without delay. by his actions president trump has broken his oath of office. his conduct continues to undermine our constitution and threaten our next election. his actions warrant his impeachment and demand his removal from office. i urge my colleagues to support these articles and i reserve the balance of my time. >> gentleman from georgia. >> it's my pleasure at this time to yield three minutes to the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. sensen brener. >> the constitution says that any civil officer including the president may be impeached for
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treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. unlike the nixon and clinton cases, there are no allegations that the president has committed a crime. we have had almost three years of nonstop investigations. we've had the mueller report, we've had the schiff investigation, we've had the nadler investigation. and at no time is there any evidence that indicates that donald trump violated any criminal statute of the united states. so why are we here? we're here because the majority caucus, the democratic caucus, has been hijacked by the radical left. they have wanted to reverse the course of the 2016 election ever since donald trump won that election. let's look at these two phony articles of impeachment. first of all, abuse of power.
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the phone call in question had the president say our country has been through a lot, i want you to do us a favor, not me a favor, us a favor. and there he was referring to our country, the united states of america, not a personal political gain. he was not afraid to let this transcript go public and he released the transcript almost immediately after the call. now the second article of impeachment, obstruction of congress, it basically says that unless the president gives us everything we want and when we want it that he has committed an impeachable offense. that's a bunch of bunk. the president has certain individual and privileges by virtue of his office. whenever there's been a dispute between the executive and legislative branches heretofore,
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they've gone to court. the supreme court a couple weeks ago said they would take jurisdiction over deciding whether the president had to comply with one subpoena relating to his tax returns. now here the democrats have been bent to impeach the president of the united states before the court decides this. and this means that there is a rush job to do this. and why is there? because they want to influence the 2020 elections. and they spent three years doing it. they spent millions of taxpayer dollars including the mueller report putting together this impeachment and they also have had this congress wrapped around impeachment and not doing their jobs until the dam broke this week. stop this charade, vote no. and i yield back.
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>> the gentleman from new york. >> mr. speaker, the gentleman from wisconsin knows full well the president asserted no privileges here. he simply ordered complete defiance of the impeachment inquiry. i now yield two minutes to the gentle head di frlady from penn ms. scan lan. >> it's with profound sadness that i stand here today in support of these articles of impeachment. president trump's behavior is exactly what our founders feared most. they knew that with the awesome power of the presidency came the risk of a president abusing that power for personal gain. they were particularly concerned about an executive who became entangled with foreign governments, corrupted our elections or sought to avoid consequences for his own
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misconduct in office. that is why they included impeachment in the constitution, to protect our republic. our colleagues across the aisle have claimed we're impeaching the president because we don't like him. but this moment is about more than disagreement with the president's policies or personality. those issues belong in the voting booth. our task here is not to judge the president himself. instead we must judge his conduct and whether his actions have undermined our constitution. the president has committed the highest of high crimes under our constitution. he used the highest office in h our government and taxpayer dollars to interfere in our elections. he undermined our national security and when he got caught, he tried to cover it up, obstructing our investigation and refusing to produce subpoenaed documents and witnesses. a government where the president abuses his power is not of the people.
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a government where the president pressures a foreign country to undermine our elections is not by the people. and a government where the president puts his own interests before the country is not for the people. this isn't complicated. you know it, i know it, the american people know it. president trump's wrongdoing and the urgent threat that his actions present to our next election and our democracy leaves us no principled alternative but to support these articles of impeachment, our constitution, our country and our children depend upon it. i yield back. >> the gentleman from georgia. >> i wish they would examine the factual conduct but i guess that's not going to happen. at this point i yield two minutes to the gentleman from louisiana mr. johnson. >> the gentleman is recognized. >> the founders warned us against a single party impeachment because they feared
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it would bitterly and perhaps irreparably divide our nation. there has never been a single party fraudulent impeachment process like the one being used today. our democrat colleagues have weaponized the impeachment provision of the constitution to nullify the votes of 63 million american who s who elected pres trump. this is not about a phone call or ukraine or even his use of executive privilege. 95 of the democrats on this floor today voted to impeach donald trump before the july 25th phone call ever happened between president trump and president zelensky. not only is this a single party impeachment, it's also evidence free. after all their efforts, they could only come up with two short articles of impeachment. the democrats know there is zero direct evidence to show that president trump engaged in any abuse of power. their entire case is based on
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hearsay, speculation and conjecture. there's not a single fact witness that with provide testimony to support their baseless allegations. the democrats' second claim is that president trump obstructed congress by simply doing what every other president in the modern era has also done. that is to assert a legitimate executive privilege which protects the separation of powers. if they disagreed, the democrats could have and should have just gone to a federal court to get an expedited court order compelling the documents and information they requested. that's what's always been done in the past but they didn't do that here because these democrats don't have time for it. they are trying to meet their own arbitrary, completely reckless timeline to take down a president that they loathe. as they have pursued this impeachment 20 times faster than the impeachment investigation of bill clinton. they're trying to reach their
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predetermined political outcome. along the way they steam rolled over due process. >> the gentleman's time has expired. >> i-year-old back. >> the gentleman from new york is recognized. >> speaker, the gentleman knows that impeachment was put into the constitution as a defense of the republic in between elections. i now yield to ms. e. >> this is a day of accountability and defending our democracy. the facts in front of us are clear. this president donald trump coerced a fragile foreign ally to investigate his political opponent and interfere in our elections. and he leveraged critically need ed congressionally approved
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military ate to ukraine. the president's allies claim that he did this because he cared about corruption. if president trump truly cared about corruption, then he would have listened to the talking points prepared by the national security counsel on anti-corruption. he did not. in fact, on those two calls with president zelensky, he never mentioned the word corruption. he did not abide by the department of defense's own recommendation that ukraine had passed all the anti-corruption benchmarks and he didn't listen to the you than mouse conclusion of all of his top advisors that he must release that aid to crane. he did release the aid in 2018 but not in 2019. why? because joe biden was running for president. the president told us himself on national television exactly what he wanted from the phone call
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with president zelensky. he came onto the white house lawn and he said i wanted president zelensky to open an investigation into the bidens. he solicited foreign interference before, he is going it now and he will do it again. the president is the smoking gun. our founders, mr. speaker, entrusted us with the awesome responsibility of protecting our democracy, which gets its power not from the blood hinlines of monarchs but we the people. without that we are not a democracy we are a tidictatorsh. i will vote to impeach donald trump. i yield back. >> the gentleman from georgia. >> i also remind my chairman that impeachable has never been a political weapon in between elections when you can't win the next one.
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i yield to mr. conaway. >> the decision to move forward with impeachment of a united states president has only been done three times previously in our nation's history all based on legitimate evidence of criminal behavior. many of my colleagues have turned this into a political circus. the democrats have been intent on impeaching the president since the day he took office. the partisan impeachment investigation run by the house intelligence committee was unnecessarily held behind closed doors in a room designed to share classified information. nothing classified was shared during these meetings but most members of congress and all americans were blocked from hearing the facts themselves.
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he was even called out by liberal media for spreading misinformation and falsehoods throughout the impeachment process. the public hearings were a complete disregard for house rules and the decades of president. republicans were not allowed to call witnesses or make basic parliamentary motions. we have not been presented any real evidence that proves the president is guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors. we are forever weakened this body by turning impeachment into a political weapon. this impeachment scheme is an attempt to conduct a tax pairer fu research. it's time for this madness to stop and get back to the important work the american
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people sent us here to do. >> gentleman from new york. >> mr. speaker i now yield three minutes to the distinguished gentleman from california mr. lieu. >> let's start by making this very simple. no one in america could do what donald trump did and get away with it. no american u.s. official can call up a foreign government and ask for an investigation of a political opponent. no member of congress can call up a foreign official and ask for help in our reelection campaign. if we did that, we would likely get indicted. no one is above the law. the constitution is the free oath of the land. the oath i took was not to a political tarty or to a president or to a king.
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we are not here because of policy disputes. while i disagree with the president, i acknowledge he has a right to restrict the number of refugees entering our country. he has a right to eliminate environmental executive orders. he has a right to sign a bill that has given tax breaks to the wealthy. but the president does not have the right to cheat and solicit foreign interference in our elections. that is illegal and we will not stand for it. the president's actions of this case were particularly insidious because he also used our government for his private gain. he conditioned taxpayer funded military aid with the ukraine president on the requirement that ukraine publicly announce an investigation into his opponent and by harming ukrainian national security the president also harmed u.s. national security.
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and then the president solicited foreign interference again on the south lawn of the white house when he again asked ukraine to investigate his political opponent. that abuse of power is not acceptable. whether or not the senate convicts, the house has independent duty to do the right thi thing. that's why we have passed over 200 bipartisan bills that are stuck in the senate. we'll continue to be faithful of the constitution regardless of what the senate may or may not do. impeachment is a form of deterren deterrence. our children are watching, no president ever wants to be impeached. whether donald trump leaves in one month, one year or five years, this impeachment is permanent, it will follow him around for the rest of his lives and the historical books will know why we recorded this.
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no one is above the law, not a commander in chief, not our president. i yield back. >> the gentleman from georgia. >> at this time it's my pleasure to yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from north carolina. >> 63 million americans went to the polls and elected donald trump president of the united states. house democrats have been trying to overturn the election ever since. they tried five additional times to the one that's before us to impeach the president including the vote in may of 2017, just five months into his term. in january of this year house democrats took control of this chamber and were faced with a choice. they could use the tools of the majority to improve the american people or it could use the tools to undo the 2016 election. they made their choice. since then house democrats have issued more subpoenas than bills
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have been signed into law. that tell us all we need to know about this congress and that party. rather than launch a legitimate investigation, democrats turned to focus groups to reshape their language. house democrats rushed to impeachment. so here we are 12 weeks later, voting whether to impeach the president based off the thinner record in modern history. it's no surprised that the senate is already looking for more documents and real evidence. the body of evidence is weak and willfully insufficient for impeachment. i yield back on this sad day before this institution. >> mr. nadler. >> i now yield two minutes to the gentleman from maryland mr.
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raskin. >> american elections belong to the american people, not the american president and not for foreign powers. no president may cheat the people by working with foreign governments to sfael from us a free and fair election and no president who attempts it may cover up that cheating by systemically obstructing congress in our work. the reason we have a constitution is to keep government officials from doing whatever they want. if we the people lose the certainty of free and fair elections to presidential corruption and foreign manipulation, then we lose our democracy itself. the most precious inheritance we received from prior generations. the struggle for democracy is
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the means of america. that is why we remain the last best hope of a world ravaged by authoritarianism, violence and corruption. we must act now to protect our elections and safeguard constitutional democracy for the enormous and unprecedented challenges that still lie ahead of us. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in opposition of hr 755. today is a disappointing day. it is the day my colleagues from across the aisle cast the vote that they have spent the last three years obsessing over. the vote to impeach our duetly elected president. there are two charges claimed by house democrats and there is zero cause for either. while president trump has led,
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our country has thrived and washington liberals have failed. despite the commitment of many of our colleagues to obstruct the administration's agenda at every turn, our country continues to succeed. in this body however we are not been able to deliver on what americas want and need. we still have not finished securitying our border. the opioid em democratpidemic s in our communities and we still have not reached ed a bipartisa resolution on drug pricing. think of what we could have done.
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but we didn't all because of divisive political theatrics. congress can do better than this and america deserves better. i yield back my time. >> the gentleman from georgia reserves. the gentleman from new york. >> i knew yield to the gentleman. >> i spirit tupport the article impeachment. president trump abused the enormous powers of his office when he solicited foreign interference for the purpose of helping him in his reelection campaign in 2020. the president undermined the security of our elections when he put his own personal political interest. he tried to cheat to win reelection. this wasn't an attack on joe biden. this was an attack on our
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democracy. today every member of this chamber faces a choice. to turn a blind eye to the overwhelming evidence of high crimes and misdemeanors. to my friends on the other side of the aisle, i say this. this is not about making history. this is about holding a lawless president accountable in the way our framers intended. this is a time to put our country over your political party. do not seek safety in the high grass of a vote against these articles. we are all americans. show the american people your devotion to our country is more powerful than your loyalty to a political party. divided we risk losing our democracy. all you have to do is look at the evidence because it will leaf you with only one answer. the president of the united states must be impeached.
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he tried to cheat, he got caught, he confessed, then he obstructed. i pray you will do the right thing and i yield back. >> the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from georgia. >> it gives me pleasure to yield a minute to the gentleman from alabama mr. rogers. >> i rise today in complete and total support of president trump the the matter before the house today is based solely on a fundamental hatred of our president. it's a sham a witch hunt and is tantment to a coup against a duly elected president of the united states. this is a sad day for our notion when one political party try to hijack our constitution. the democrat majority has
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irresponsibly turned the impeachment process into a political weapon. it is well pastime for the house to move beyond this and put our nation first. that's exactly what president trump is doing. the united states has record low unemployment, historic performance in the stock market. president trump is rewriting failed trade deals of the past to put america first. he's rebuilding our military. he helped create the space force. and the list goes on. i implore my colleagues to end the spectacle now. >> mr. nadler. >> mr. speaker, i'm hearing a lot from my colleagues on the other side of the aisle except a defense of president trump's conduct, which is indefensible. i now yield two minutes to the gentleman from florida mr. deutsche. >> some say this impeachment is about eight lines in a call
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transcript, but there is so much more. this was about a scheme that lasted months and involved dozens of trump administration firms. look at the direct evidence. text messages, e-mails, calls and meetings way back in may. the president told his team talk to rudy giuliani. ambassador sondland said there was a prewe can requisite prere important thing for a president to do was to commit to the investigation of the bidens. we will nail down a date for a visit to washington. the direct evidence kept coming after the call, more texts, more
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e-mails, more calls. if ukraine didn't announce an investigation into the president's political rival, then they wouldn't get the white house meeting and they wouldn't get the aid they needed in the war against russia. american presidential power comes from the people through elections and the constitution requires that we protect those elections. when the president abused his palm beach county sheriff's office, he was cheating american voters before they even had a chance to vote. president trump's actions force us to protect our elections and the constitution. i urge my colleagues to defend the constitution, support these articles of peach and remind the world that in america no one is above the law. >> i yield back. >> the gentleman from georgia. >> there's four facts, there's no pressure, no canalty.
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>> i'm not surprised this day has come but i am dispoiappoint because impeachment is one of the most controversial decisions we can make in this body. this impeachment is based purely on partisan motives. speaker pelosi said we shouldn't go down this path because of howho how divisive it can be. they failed to pass a budget on time, failed to pass spending bills on time and the american people slee through this hard
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chad. the trump of the call showed no conditions placed on the aid. president trump and president zelensky have said there was no pressure and ukraine received the aid without taking any actions. the president may only be confused for committing bribery. nowhere does t argue that the president has committed treasury, bribe lry or any crim under the law. the speaker was right in one way. this is incredibly divisive and has lowered the bar for what feature presidents will face. i strongly oppose the articles before it today. i hope we will find a new path to this nightmare and get results for the american people. i-year-old back. >> the gentleman from new york is once again recognized. >> the evidence is clear that president trump took advantage of his office to help his reelection campaign.
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this is the highest of high crimes and pup must be held to account. >> i thank the gentleman for yielding. i know firsthand the dangers that sborn interference. congress has a constitutional job to investigate allegations of misconduct by the executive branch including thenite ininei states president. the constitution is the highest law of the land to prevent the creation of a king. congress is a coequal branch of our nation's document. this is a very sad day and i do
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not take impeachment lightly. yet i'm here to do my job as a member of congress. [ speaking foreign language]
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>> today i pray for god for his guidance in uniting our great nation. with that, i yield. >> the gentleman will be required to provide a translation of your remarks. the gentleman from new york. do you reserve r, mr. nadler? the gentleman reserves. mr. collins is recognized. >> i would have to disagree with my chairman. facts are not undisputed. they're very much disputed. i yield a minute and a half to mr. carter. >> mr. speaker, in opposition to the democrats' sham process which makes a mockery of the rules of the house and is
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frankly dangerous to this country. since day one the democrats have made it clear they wanted to move toward impeachment well before any of the accusations took place. what democrats don't recognize is the damage this will cause for our political institutions and america for years to come. every american should be concerned that speaker pelosi doesn't trust our citizens to let them decide who should lead our great country. this impeachment process isn't focused on strengthening and protecting our political foundations, but rather shaping public opinion. i ask you, is it worth that. the process is wasting valuable time that could be used to secure our borders, addressing student loan debt or bringing down the cost of health care or
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prescription drugs. i you recolleurge my colleagues themselves whether this is truly being done for the good of the country. >> the gentleman from new york, mr. nadler. >> i would remind the gentleman that after recovering millions of dollars in ill gotten gains, the mueller investigation was actually a net plus for the taxpayers. i now recognize the gentleman from colorado for two minutes. >> i want to thank chairman nadler and speaker pelosi for their leadership and their moral courage. today the house of representatives is debating the to vote to impeach the president for only the fourth time in our nation's hour. the fact of the matter is that
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the president abused the power of his office and invited a foreign country to interfere in our elections. in so doing, he undermined the san sancti sanctity. over the past several months president trump and his administration have done everything they can to prevent congress from uncovering the truth. in the history of our republic, no president has ever obstructed justice. president nixon's chief of staff testified before congress. president trump's chief of staff refused. president nixon's counsel testified. president trump's refused.
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white house aides close to nixon testified. >> president trump refewed to allow any -- simply put, his administration has engaged in a wholesale obstruction of congress. that is exactly why we're considering not just one, but two articles of impeachment before the house today. every member of this body has a responsibility to uphold our constitution, to defend our republic and when necessary, to hold the executive branch accountable. we are intersizing that possibility today. with that and therefore i will vote yes on both articles because it is what the constitution requires and what my conscience demands. >> the gentleman from georgia. >> wow i'd have never thought that a department of justice investigation was used as a money revenue plot but i guess one thing is true.
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it was a loser for the minority in the situation. >> the people's house should be better than this. we should be better than this. during a member's remarks in the judiciary committee, he saided and i quote, to my republican kli colleagues how do you want to be remembered? >> it won't be watching sports on a lap on the during official judiciary committee proceedings, it won't be used for explative.
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my fellow republican colleagues and i won't be remembered in history for doing any of those things because we know this is far too grave a matter for subversions such as these. we should all be better than this. >> mr. nadler. >> mr. speaker may i inquire how much time remains on both sides? >> mr. nadler, you have 156 and 3/4 minutes remaining. the gentleman from georgia has 157 minutes remaining. divide that by 60.
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>> thank you, mr. speaker. i now yield two minutes to ms. escobar. >> our country faces a great tragedy and moment of truth. we have witnessed the president of the united states abuse his public office for personal political gain and invite foreign governments to interfere in our elections, putting the integrity of a government of, for and by the people, at great risk. the evidence is overwhelming and clearly shows that president trump will continue to abuse his office and obstruct congress if left unchecked. the intelligence committee conducted a robust investigation into the president's conduct. members interviewed 12 witnesses, conducted 17 depositions, examined text messages and e-mails, reviewed
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the president's own words of what happened, all of us that despite the fact that under the president's direction 12 current and former administration officials refused to testify, even ignoring subpoenas and 71 document questions for denied. we c-- the evidence shows that president trump is a clear and present danger to our free and fair elections and our national security. the most powerful evidence of this pattern has come from the president himself. in 2016 we heard him when he called on russia to interfere in our elections.russia, if you're listening. he then repeated this call on july 24th with the american
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president and we heard him on the white house lawn further adding china to that mix. i stand ready to protect our sacred republic, support these articles of impeachment and i pr pray my colleagues have the urge to do the same. no one is above the law. i yield back. >> the gentleman from georgia. >> i yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from florida. >> thank the gentleman for yielding. in 2016 vladimir putin and his cronies waged a war on our elections with the goal of sewing discord in the vision in america. do you think he's been successful? somewhere in russia right now putin is laughing at us today. the majority has given him exactly what he wants, a divided america with a pure partisan politics with nasty political
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rhetoric at an all-time high. for some already across the a aisle. the house majority has been carrying out the wishes of the kremlin. the democrats have vowed to continue their sham investigations even after today's vote. impeaching a president in a fairly partisan thanner with no crimes to show for it disgraces the integrity of our democracy. now is time to end the partisan politics, come together and put america first. i urge this body to vote no to partisan impeachment. >> the gentleman yields back. the gentleman reserves. mr. nadler? >> mr. speaker, i now yield two minutes to the distinguished
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gentleman from new york mr. jeffreys. >> george washington in his farewell address to the nation counselled america that the constitution is safely obligatory upon all. it is in that spirit that we proceed today. donald trump pressured a foreign government to target an american citizen for political gain and at the same time withheld without justification $391 million in military aid to a vulnerable ukraine as part of a scheme to solicit foreign interference in an american election. that is unacceptable. that is unconscionable. there are some who argue that the impeachment of this president will further divide an all fractured union.
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slavery once decided the nation but emancipators recognize up to clarify that all men are created equally. jim crow once decided the nation but civil rights champions rose up to clarify that all are entitled to equal protection under the law. there is a difference between division and clarification. we will hold this president accountable for his stunning abuse of power. we will hold this president accountable for undermining our national security. we will hold this plt accountable for corrupting our democracy. we will impeach donald john trump. we will clarify that in america no one is above the law. >> the gentleman yields back.
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the gentleman from georgia. >> i-year-old two minutes to mr. mcclintock. >> mr. speaker nullifying a international election requires an overwhelming case of high crimes supported by indisputable evidence that the vast majority of the nation find compelling. article one is a made-up crime called abuse of office. it does not charge that the president broke any law. this would reduce the presidency to that of a minister destroying separation of powers at the heart of our constitution. article two is another made-up crime called obstruction of congress. it means the president sought to defend his constitutional
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rights. our bill of rights guaranteed every american the right to confront their accuser, to call witnesses in their defense, to be protected from hearsay and to defend these rights in court. the democrats have trampled them all in their stampede to impeach. even in this kangaroo court, the democrats hand-picked witnesses provided no firsthand knowledge the president leaked aid. in any case, it charged no actual crime and offered no legally admissible evidence would be laughed out of court in a heartbeat. that's the case before us today. it would redefine the grounds for impeachment in such a way that assures it will become a constant presence in our national life. now we know how reckless is the
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democrats' chant resist by any means necessary. this is a shameless travesty of judgment. >> mr. nadler. >> mr. speaker, abuse of power was no vague or weak notion to the framers. it had a very specific meaning. the use of official power to obtain an improper personal benefit while ignoring the national interest. i now yield two minutes to mr. cohen. >> the skbgentleman is recogniz >> from our founding the united states has been a special nation, the city upon a hill. our values are enshrined in our constitution, liberty, equality and opportunity. we are self-governing people. in the united states we don't have a king. we choose our leaders.
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we vote. generations have fought and guyed to secure these rights. the constitution begins we the people of the united states. that's us. it's not we the leaders of russia or ukraine or china owe we the democrats or we the republicans. it's we the people of the united states and only americans get to have a say in our elections. president trump tried to use a foreign nation to be -- trump called for foreign interference when he said russia if you are listening. in 2019 president trump sought foreign interference when he needed a favor from ukraine. president trump attacked in his
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continuing threat to our system of free and fair elections. i took an oath. i urge my colleagues to abide by that oath and stand up to president trump's abuse of power and obstruction of congress. god save the united states of america. i yield back the balance of my time. >> the gentleman yields back. the gentleman and all members are reminded to address their comments to the chairperson. the gentleman from georgia. >> i believe that elections should be free and fair. i believe that with all my heart. this speaker said last month it would be dangerous to leave it
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to the voters to recognize. >> the gentleman is recognized. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i have descended into the belly of the beast. i have witnessed the terror within and i raise committed to oppose the insidious forces, but this unjust and weaponized impeachment brought upon us by the same socialist who threatened unborn life in the womb, who threatened second amendment protections of every american patriot and who have long ago determined that they would organize and conspire to overthrow president trump. we don't face this horror because the democrats have all of a sudden become constitutionalists. we're not being devoured from within because of some surreal assertion of the social lists'
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newfound love of the very flag they trod upon. we face this horror because of this map. this is what the democrats fear. they fear the true will of we the people. they are deep establishment d.c. they fear. they call this republican map flyover country. they call us deplorables. they fear our strength, our unity, our vote and our president. we will never surrender our nation to career establishment, d.c. politicians and bureaucrats. our republican shall survive this threat from within. american patriots shall prevail. mr. speaker, i yield. >> the gentleman yields back. >> i'll reserve. >> the gentleman from new york mr. nadler. >> mr. johnson. >> mr. johnson is recognized.
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>> thank you, mr. speaker. i was not among those who supported impeachment before ukraine but i call for impeachment today because our president is as we speak abusing his power and placing himself above the law. president trump's attempt to sabotage the 2020 te election is a clear and present danger on our democracy. we know that it's wrong to enlist the help of foreigners in interfering in our i hexs. we know it's wrong to cheat and we know what's at stake. it's not just that our elections were attacked. our elections are under attack right now. the very day the judiciary committee voted out articles of
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impeachment, president trump welcomed rudy giuliani back to the white house. president trump is still at it. he's doubling down. he doesn't think he can win an election fair and square so he's trying to cheat. to ignore these crimes is not just giving the president a pass. it's giving him a green light. those who vote against impeachment are not just endorsing president trump's past actions but his future ones as well. if you think i exaggerate in warning that our elections can be undermined, i'd urge you to continue down to georgia, find a black man or woman of the same age and they' -- so that we coud have free and fair elections. we're not asked to possess even
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a fraction of their courage. we're simply called to do what's right. i'm proud to vote impeachment and with that i yield back. >> i'm glad that my colleague just mentioned georgia because since 2014 the actual voter participation among minorities, african-american female, african-american male have risen double didngits. >> madam speaker i yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from pennsylvania mr. muser. >> madam speaker, back home people refer to capitol hill as a bubble. . they are right. it's as if we're completely detached from what's going on in communities across america. many here don't hear or listen to what people are saying and they think they know boater than
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the people we serve. a booming economy, secure border, better trade deals and a stronger military. unfortunately inside the halls of congress democrats' obsession with impeachment is all-consuming. is this how a leader disregards the will of the american people in doing everything in their power from preventing this congress from doing the job they're to do. democrats have delivered two weak articles of impeachment, abuse of power. not according to the ukraine. president zelensky confirmed many times that there was no quid pro quo, no action taken and significant military aid was delivered without anything in return. of course his words have been conveniently dismissed. obstruction of congress. is this the new standard? every president since jimmy
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carter and every president moving forward would and will be impeached. it is an honor to serve in the u.s. house of representatives but today i am distraught. today democrats disregard the will of the american people and vote to elect. this has eroded if not wiped out the trust the american people have in congress. >> madam speaker, president trump said no quid pro quo only after the white house learned of the whistleblower complaint and after the "washington post" had published an article about the president's pressure campaign on ukraine. i now yield two minutes to the distinguished gentle lady from california, miscellaneous bass. >> this is a sad day in u.s. history when we have to vote on articles of impeachment because donald trump has abused the power of the office.
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the president abused the power of his office by attempting to shake down the president of a country that has been our ally. trump wanted president zelensky to dig up dirt on vice president biden pause he sees them as the biggest threat to his reelection. fact two, trump wanted zelensky to go before the press and announce an investigation into biden, hoping the mere announcement. trump obstructed congress by engaging in a coverup. he has blocked current and past employees from testifying before congressional committees. one of our central responsibilities is to provide oversight into the investigation. no one branch would have
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unchecked power. the house of representatives has no choice but to vote and pass articles of impeachment because president trump has abused his power and obstructs the ability of congress. there is no reason to believe that president trump won't continue to abuse the power of his office, no reason to continue to be that he won't put his foot on the scale of reelection. an article confesses to continuing the evident to interfere in the election. in many of our congressional districts we worry about voter suppression and schemes. or we worry about russian interference in our election. it is a sad day when we have to
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worry about the commander in chief. no one is above the law. >> the gentleman from georgia. >> gentleman is recognized for two minutes. >> i discovered something recently. it's shocking, i know. but it turns out that some people don't like president trump. they think he's loud, they think he can be arrogant, sometimes he says bad words and he's rude to people. i get that, i really do. this vote, this day has nothing to do with ukraine. it has nothing to do with abuse of power. it has something to do with obstruction of congress. this vote this day is about one thing and one thing only. they hate this president.
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they think we're stupid. think they we made a mistake. they think hillary clinton should be the president and they want to fix that. they want to take away my vote and throw it in the flash. they want to take away my president and delegitimize him so he cannot be elected. you've been trying to impeach this president since before he was sworn into office. some of you introduced articles of impeachment before he was sworn into office. this isn't something you're approaching sadly. this is something you're gleeful about. you've been trying to do it for three years and it's very clear you don't have to go back and google much to find out that is
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the absolute truth. that whees this is about. if you think this impeachment is successful, the next president is going to be impeached and the next after that. if you set this bar as being impeachable, every president in our future will be impeached. high crimes and misdemeanors, other than that. i look forward to that date. let the american people decide. >> members are reminded to direct their comments to the chair. gentleman from new york. >> reserve. >> madam speaker i would remind the gentleman that if president trump is impeached and removed, the new president will be mike pence, not hillary clinton. i now yield two minutes to the distinguished gentle lady from n
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florida. >> the gentle lady is recognized for two minutes. >> i did not have the privilege of being born into this country. my mother brought me from ecuador looking for freedom and opportunity. this is a story that i share with so many people who live in florida's 26th district and all over the country. we' brutal dictatorships have choked their potential to benefit those in power. this president, elected by the american people, has violated his oath of office and violated the rule of law. the evidence is overwhelming withheld military aid approved by congress and leveraged by a white house meeting to abstract is political favor from a foreign government. the president sought foreign
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election interference to benefit himself. it is undeniable that he has abused his power and obstructed congress. he prevents a very clear and present danger to our democracy. as an immigrant i still get chills because i feel so fortunate to live in this this extraordinary country. the genius lies in our constitution and the dedication to rule of law. i want my children and all of our children to feel the same way when they grow up. however, if we sit by as cracks begin to appear in our domestic institutions, our children will be in the same situation where leaders destroyed democracy. we in congress must abide by our oath to defend the constitution. that is my duty as a member of this body. that is my duty as a mother.
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i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> at this time i yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from new york mr. king. >> thank you. madam speaker i rise today in strong opposition to the articles of impeachment against president trump. as chairman nadler must recall, exactly 21 years ago today i spoke on this floor abou. to impeach a president for a phone call for which no crime is charged, never mind a high crime and asserting his constitutional prerogatives as president is a clear abuse of power by the congress. it says the dangerous precedent to undo the solemn decision of the american people.
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spe i urge a no vote. i yield back the balance of my time and strongly urge a no vote. >> gentleman yields back. >> i'll reserve. >> gentleman from new york. >> i now yield 2 1/2 minutes to the gentle lady from california. >> the president and members of congress each take an oath to uphold the constitution. when a president abuses his constitutional power, we have an obligation to live up to our oath of office. we've within presebeenvote on a power and contempt of power as a result of that evidence. i've worked on presidential impeachments as part of the
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judiciary committee twice before. this third time brings me no joy. president nixon attempted to corrupt elections. his agents broke into the democratic party headquarters to get a leg up on the election and then just like president trump he tried to cover it up, then he resigned. this is even worse. president trump not only abused his power, the he used a foreign government to do it. he used military aid provided to fight the russians as rev rage the direct evidence is damming. the president hand offered any evidence to the contrary. these actions constitute grounds for presidential impeachment. what is before us is a serious abuse of power and obstruction of congress. these abuses strike at the heart of our constitution.
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the president's unconstitutional abuse of power, a high crime and misdemeanor is ongoing. he totally refused to provide any information to congress related to the impeachment inquiry. it's our responsibility to use the tool our founders give us in the constitution to preserve the constitutional order. we must impeach. and i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. at this time i yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from c c. >> madam speaker, the "washington post" headlined the story immediately following president trump taking the oath of office stating the campaign to impeach president trump has gun. how accurate they were. here we are almost three years later and what we're witnessing is unprecedented in american history, a partisan based impeachment with no facts that warrant it. this is an impeachment based on
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hearsay and speculation rooted in a deep seated hatred for a man for who many of my colleagues on the other side detest. not all, but many. nowhere in the constitution does it say that personal disdain is grounds for impeachment. the claims made by my democrat colleagues have turned out to be false. early on it was claimed there was evidence of russian collusion. there was none. we were told the fbi didn't abuse the fisa process in its investigation of the trump campaign. that too has now been proven completely false. then when the russian collusion hopes collapsed, we were told we would hear from a whistleblower. then we find out they weren't even on the call and we still don't know who the whistleblower is. we were told there was clear evidence of a quid pro quo for personal gain. after reading the trip, it is obvious that you have to make
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assumptions that wouldn't even stand up in traffic court to come to that conclusion. the end putinable the indisputable facts -- >> the gentleman's time has expired. >> mr. speaker, today -- >> the gentleman's time has expired. >> the country is now -- >> gentleman is recognized. >> the country is now more divided than it ever has been in my lifetime. the truth has been trampled by this house of representatives and because of the abuses at the fbi and the department of justice, more americans have an even dimmer view of very important american institutions. thankfully the lens of history will ensure that the truth is told and will endure. >> gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker, one specific concern of the framers was a president who would corrupt our
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elections, would abuse the great powers of his office to ensure his own reelection. the impeachment inquiry is not an effort to overturn an election. it is a reaffirmation of the simple truth that in the united states of america no person, not even the president is above the law and our democracy cannot allow a duly i elected president to abuse the power of his office for personal and political gain. i yield 2 1/2 minutes to ms. jackson lee. >> the gentle lady is recognized for 2 1/2 minutes. >> i hate no woman or man. today the american people should receive clarity and truth. the constitution is the highest law of the land. the president breached and
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violated the constitution of the united states of america. the president committed constitutional crimes. the president's crimes are impeachable. john f. kennedy said if this country should ever reach the point where any man or group of men by force or threat of force could defy the commands of our courts and constitution, then no law would stand free from doubt and no citizen would be safe from his neighbors. the facts are ndisputed. first president trump violated his oath of office by placing his personal political interests above the national interest by scheming to coerce ukraine into investigating a potential election opponent. president trump betrayed the nation by withholding the $391 million to a fragile ally against a very strong foe russia. third the president wanted to enlist a foreign country to help
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in the 2020 election. these acts are constitutional crimes and abuse of power. the truth is the president did ask for a favor. those were his own words. in the july 25th call, no mention of corruption, only the mention of the bidens. the president was engaged in wrongdoing and is a clear and present danger. the truth is that abuse of power does violate the constitution while corrupting and cheating our american democracy. he must take care oh execute laws faithfully. this is the truth. why does the truth matter? pause it m it matters to the way tres on an early morning shift. it matters to the teacher in a fifth grade class. it matters to a mother kissing her military recruit going off to war. our laws must be honored and
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respected. the bloodshed and sacrifice of fellow americans cannot be ignored, trampled on or rejected. the vote taken today must be for no personal gain or grandeur. the truth is no longer for all. it is for one man donald trump his truth, his way. we must reject that abuse of power because this is not america. no one is above the law. >> the gentle lady's time has expired. >> and violated the trust. we must impeach donald trump. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you. at this time it's my pleasure to yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from michigan, mr. mitchell. >> today the house of representatives votes on two articles of impeachment for president trump. members and all members must
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recognize that impeachment was intended to be a safety valve, rarely used, only when a president acts in such an immoral and blatantly unlawful matter. the future tone of this house and politics in this nation must be carefully considered. this year is not whether we agree with or like the president's rhetoric, political tacti tactics, use of twitter or his political rallies. one of our founders alexander hamilton warned that the risks of impeachment coming a solely partisan act. this inquiry and articles clearly do not heed that warning. these proceedings are weaponizing impeachment making it another election tool. i've carefully examined the evidence presented throughout the inquiry. and contrary to some, i considered our history, our
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founding documents and our future. it is clear president trump's actions do not constitute treason, bribery or high crimes and misdemeanors. you simply don't like him. i yield back. >> gentleman from new york. >> i now yield two minutes to the gentleman from louisiana, mr. richmond. >> the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. >> madam speaker, president trump on january 20th, 2017, raised his hand and swore to preserve, protect and defend the constitution. now we must preserve, protect and defend the constitution from him. i rise today not to disparage and embarrass the president of the united states, but to defend our precious democracy. i speak today not because i hate the president, but because i
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love this body, the people's house. i have heard republicans say why are we rushing to judgment. this is not a rush to judgment. it's a rush to justice and we must not delay. corruption is corrosive. it eats away likes acid. just last week rudy giuliani was back at it in ukraine. so please don't tell us to wait because the corruption continues. there's a famous quote that says politicians worry about the next election. statesmen worry about the next generation. today calls upon us to be statesmen and stateswomen. democrat, republican and independent. our election is under attack from within. so to my republican colleagues, many of whom spent a lifetime trying to build a reputation of honesty and courage, i beg you
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don't throw that away for president trump. he doesn't deserve it, nor will he appreciate it past the next tweet or next week. my fear is that his actions will continue. madam speaker, donald trump recently said i can do anything i want. he also bragged that he could shoot someone on 5th avenue and get away with it. well, he's shooting holes in our constitution on pennsylvania avenue and our house, the people's house must defend the constitution to a domestic enemy to the rule of law, donald trump, because i don't want generations to come to blame me for letting our democracy die. i therefore rise in favor of impeaching donald trump. with that i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. at this point i yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from missouri. >> i rise today in strong
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opposition to the political charade. if there was ever any doubt that this entire illegitimate investigation is politically motivated speaker pelosi actually admitted the impeachment process began 2 1/2 years ago. the speaker said publicly democrats have been trying to remove our president from office since the day he got electioned simply because it was not the outcome they wanted. another admitted that the driving force behind their actions was if we don't impeach the president, we won't get reelectioned. norm to arrive at their conclusion, house democrats spent the last months staging well rehearsed hearings. democrat staff served as judge and jury. even with the odds blatantly
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stacked against the president, democrats still came up with bh absolutely nothing. justice was not having afforded the president during the investigation. he was denied due process. that makes this process illegal and what illegitimate. what a sham. >> madam speaker i now yield two minutes to the gentle lady from texas, ms. garcia. >> i think we come to congress to impeach the president even when he separated babies from their parents at the border, even when he took money from our troops to build his wall. no, i didn't call for impeachment. yet here we are in the middle of the constitutional crisis.
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as a former judge, i took my responsibility seriously to weigh the evidence and determine if the president's actions were impeachable. unfortunately the evidence in the intelligence and judiciary reports leaves us with no choice but to impeach the president. so i stand on my oath that i have sworn to the constitution and to the american people. today i urge my colleagues to stand by their oath too. the framers of the constitution included impeachment as a safeguard against a corrupt president whose misconduct could destroy the very foundations of our country. donald trump abused his power when he obstructed congress and ordered government officials not to appear before us. donald j. trump corrupted our election when he asked a foreign government to interfere for his
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personal and political gain. today, sadly, i asked my colleagues will you put your party over our country, or will you help save our democracy and vote yes on the articles of impeachment before you? i urge you to vote yes. ishing. >> kjetil lady yields back. >> thank you. >> gentleman from georgia has 2 hours, 22.5 minutes. >> gentleman from new york, 2 hours 27.5 minutes left. >> thank you, madam speaker. at this point, i yield now to a minute and a half gentleman in iowa, mr. king. >> gentleman's recognized for a minute and a half. >> i start off first this is the
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largest and most massive cover-up of such a list of crimes against our country and goes so far as to bring impeachment hearings to try to cover all of this up. i take you back to october of 2015 which barack obama said hillary clinton would never intend to jeopardize our national security. again following april, the next month, peter strzok wrote the statement delivered by james comey, spent democrat money and hillary clinton money in russia to pick up dirt on donald trump. then joe biden goes to ukraine and makes a statement, here's $1 billion but you must do what i tell you to do. you're accusing donald trump of doing that which joe biden has confessed to doing. by the way, joe biden was not the opponent of donald trump. he's in a 21-way primary for -- running third in that race. his opponents of the 20 other democrat. how would anybody dig into that mess of 21 people decide he's
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going to go overseas? you assign him a motive, create the dots and go dot to dot. reality is it was biden that was doing the extortion of the powerplay in order to protect his own son and it was donald trump that was following the law that said you have to ensure there's no corruption here before this money is handed over. by the way, there was a violent war going on in ukraine. that's when we sent blankets and mres under barack obama. when i hear this from gentleman from georgia, mr. johnson, he doesn't think he can win the election fair and square so would cheat and i heard that here on this no. no. the other way around. your number one proponent of impeachment, from texas, said the very same things and brought this case november 9th the day after trump was elected. i yield back. >> reserve. >> gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker i need two minutes to the gentle lady from
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pennsylvania. >> recognized for two minutes. >> madam speaker, words matter. we've heard many words over the course of these last weeks still what strikes me are the words that are missing from my colleagues on the other side of the aisle. a gaping hole in this conversation. the words they cannot or will not mouth -- defending a president's conduct. conduct that threatens our constitutional order. and so speaker, i ask, when is it ever right for a president to coerce a foreign power to interfere in our elections? when is it ever right for 0 president to intimidate a foreign leader and announce false accusations into a political rival? when is it ever ride to hold appropriated aid to that country at the expense of its national security and our very own? and when is it ever right for a
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president to block a coequal branch of government from investigating the scheme to cheat an election? the answer, of course, is never. but that word does not come trippingly from the tongues of those who are making the choice to stand behind a man whose behavior is not worthy of your tortured words. by a vote today we are speaking to future presidents. and to future generations. we are declaring that we will not tolerate foreign interference in our presidential elections. americans alone will determine the outcome, and we will not permit a president to order the complete defiance of a coequal branch of government are and in the end regardless of the outcome of this impeachment, the president's tenure will end, and this body and our grandchildren will be left with what we did here today. ours is a somber generational duty about love of country and lifting to its greatest
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aspirations. our democracy is a matter of conscience. voting to state forward our constitution, mine is clear. i thank you, madam speaker and yield back. >> gentle lady yields back. gentleman from georgia. >> reminded many times followed a sham process and followed the facts in one vote. remind you, talk about elections, remember, speaker of the house said we can't trust the voters to, too dangerous to leave for the voters with president trump next year. with that yield to the jeton la -- gentle lady from arizona. >> thank you, madam speaker. i serve on both the judiciary committee and rules committee and i have literally spent hours, hours, poring over testimony, looking at documents, sitting in hearings and you know the conclusion i got from all of that -- this impeachment is a total joke and a total sham.
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and let me tell you one of the reasons why i think that. all of those witnesses, the 17 witnesses that the democrats brought forward, not one single one of them was able to establish that president trump committed bribery, treason, high crimes or misdemeanors. which is required in the u.s. constitution. and, again, 17 out of 24 democrat members on judiciary committee voted on this floor to move forward articles of impeachment before the phone call, and five out of nine rule committee democrat members did the same thing. so if the main part of your impeachment is the call, why did you vote for impeachment prior to the call? i also want to remind the american public, and others, that for two years adam schiff
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claimed he had proof -- proof -- that president trump had colluded with russia. that turned out to be false, and then overnight it was obstruction of justice. then quid pro quo, then bribery. then extortion. the list goes on, but yet not one of those is listed in the articles of impeachment. to my democrat colleagues, madam chair, i say, please, stop tearing the country apart. stop this sham, and i yield back. >> gentleman from new york. >> the gentle lady is correct. president trump's behavior is not new. he has a pattern of engaging in misconduct and then obstructing any investigation into his misconduct to cover up his accesses and hide the truth from the american people. i now yield to the gentle lady from california, for the purpose of unanimous consent request.
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>> gentle lady, rise in support of today's impeachment proceedings and ask unanimous consent to the revise and extend my remarks. >> without objection. >> yield -- the distinguished gentleman from rhode island. >> i thank the gentleman for yielding. madam speaker, our nation was founded on certain principles. that government should be of, by and for the people. that a system of three coequal branches of government would provide the checks and balances necessary to ensure the people's voices are heard. and that no one is above the law. today sadly we are voting to impeach president donald john trump because he fundamentally has broken his covenant with the american people. in doing so we are using powers the founding fathers enshrined in the constitution to a address president who violated his oath of office. the evidence is clear and the facts are not in question. president trump is consistently engaged in a pattern of behavior
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inconsistent with the rule of law. he refused to take responsibility for his actions, undermined the checks and balances relied on by obstructing congress at every turn and most importantly abused hi power using his office to interference of our elections undermining the will of the people. on think sad day for our nation i will do what the president has often famed to do and fulfill my only to support and defend the constitution and i will vote in favor of impeachment. i yield back the balance of my time. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. my pleasure to yield two minutes to the gentleman from ohio. >> gentleman's recognized for two minutes. >> thank you, madam speaker. today is a sad day in our nation's history house democrats poised to approve on a strictly party line vote articles of impeachment based on what constitutional scholar jonathan turley called wafer thin evidence. this will set a dangerous precedent where impeachment becomes the norm rather than the
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exception. that's not what our founding fathers intended. they warranted impeachment to be rare. they set a high bar for impeachment. treason, bribery, high crimes and misdemeanors. alleged abuse of power, the first article, is not a high crime and misdemeanor. in fact, not even a crime. since there's no concise legal definition of abuse of power, the majority party in the house can deg nate nearly any disagreement with the president from now on and impeachable offense. the second article alleged obstruction of congress would produce a similarly dangerous precedent. asserting executive privilege, a practice that began with george washington is not obstruction of kon congress. rather a function of the essential checks and balances contemplated under the constitution. here's what nearly every grade school student in america knows, but apparently house democrats do not. if congress disagrees with the president, if they don't agree
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with the president, take it to court. let the third branch of government decide. they're the refs. the house has never, i repeat, never, approved either abuse of power or obstruction of congress as an article of impeachment but that's going to change today. today house democrats are pursuing a wacky constitution theory under which all four presidents on mount rushmore could have been impeached. if this sounds absurd it's because it is. this whole process is absurd and has been from the outset. but here's what's not absurd and rather frightening. house democrats today are setting a dangerous precedent under which no future president will be immune from impeachment. and it will forever negatively tarnish the history of this house. i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker, the president's conduct constituted highest of high crimes against
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our country. an offense doesn't have to violate a criminal statute to be impeachable. confirmed in president nixon's case and again in president clinton's. no higher crime than for the president to use the power of his office to corrupt our elections. i yield one minute to the gentleman from wisconsin. >> gentleman's recognized for one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. this july president trump block ed $400 million in congressionally approved aid ukraine desperately needed to defend itself against russia. because he needed ukraine to do him a favor first. he asked the president of ukraine to launch a public investigation into a political rival, military aid and other benefits could would only come after. this is not about a single call or a single transcript. this is about a perfect storm months of activity directly ordered by the president to a senior cabinet and political appointees in orchestrated plan demanding a foreign power interfere in our democracy.
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president trump betrayed his oath of office. he abused power of his office for personal and political gain and has refused to cooperate with the coequal branch of government. this is a vote for a constitution setting the precedent for all future presidents democrat or republican. donald trump must be held accountable for his actions. today we send a clear signal to this president and all future presidents. no one is above the law. i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. at this time i yield a minute and a half to gentleman from kansas. >> gentleman is recognized a minute and a half. >> i rise today in opposition to the impeachment of a legitimately elected president of the united states. enough. madam speaker, for the love of this country, enough. enough of this impeachment circus. enough of these sham witch-hunts. i am voting, no, because the president has done nothing wrong. the only thing president trump is guilty of is doing the things
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he said he would do. and if by democrat colleagues they were honest, tell us the only thing president trump is guilty of is not being hillary clinton. the only party guilty of obstruction, abuse of power or whatever focus groups turn their views today is the party on the other side of this aisle. their obstructing the will of the american people. they're obstructing the very foundations of our country. by politically weaponizing impeachment they have dangerously shattered the president and abused our constitution. they alone will bear this responsibility. madam speaker, they'll fail, and it's no wonder the american people don't trust this body. it's pastime be done with the kirk is and get to the work that matters like securing our borders and passing trade deals. i will vote no and encourage this body to move on from this heartbreaking, disgraceful day to do things that actually matter. i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. gentleman from new york?
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>> madam speaker, i yield one minute to the gentleman from north carolina. >> gentleman of recognized one minute. >> madam speaker, the moment our founders anticipated in establishes the power of impeachment has arrived. the evidence is clear. president trump abused his power by asking a vulnerable foreign leader to investigate both his political rival and a baseless russian conspiracy theory. while withholding congressionally appropriated defense aid and a coveted white house visit. he then blocked congressional investigation into these abuses. these abuses threaten the integrity of our elections, they corrupt our diplomacy and they undermine national security. we sometimes regard constitutional checks and balances as the indestructible
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underpinning of our democracy. in fact, they're not fixed, not indestructible. the president demonstrated this beyond all doubt. it's up to the congress, the first branch of government, to apply the remedy that the constitution prescribes, because the threats to our democracy are real and present. with this vote we affirm that no one including the president is above the law. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. i yield a minute to the gentleman from kentucky. >> gentleman recognized for a minute and a half. >> since the beginning of this impeachment inquiry, it's been extremely troubling to see the partisan divide its way in which democrats carried out this entire process. i guess we shouldn't be surprised, though. they promised they'd unseat this president since the day he took his oath of office. from the start, this has been a baseless attempt to undo the
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will of 63 million americans who voted for president trump. i can tell you the people i represent in kentucky, the very people who voted for this president to enact change and fight for this country are appalled at the charade they've seen in the house in recent months. they are appalled at the actions from house democrats who have failed to even come close to proving their case. i hope all of my congressional colleagues carefully consider the precedent they are setting by voting in favor of this sham process and these illegitimate articles of impeachment. these articles were written and built on a report that was drafted with bias presumptions, cherry picked witnesses and vastly disputed facts. the president did not commit any impeachable offense, and it's clear for all of us to see through the now very well-known
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transcript. this rigged process sets a concerted president dent for e forward. i yield back. >> madam speaker, i yield one minute to the gentleman from california. >> gentleman is recognized one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. many lamented this is not bipartisan. republicans have not sought the truth, but to avoid the truth. demeaned and insulted witnesses, patriots, warriors, career diplomats, who provided evidence against the president. no house republican has joined us to demand the documents and witnesses that president trump has refused to produce. senate republican leaders this week announced president trump himself can set the rules of his own trial and there will be no pact witnesses.
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republicans refuse to seek the truth and condemn abuse of power or work with us condemning this behavior in the future's that's the tragedy of the day the events. thousands have gone into battle without reservation to fight for our republic as they still do today. many gravely injured and some made the ultimate sacrifice, but today in contrast for fear of losing an election my colleagues will not speak up for the rule of law or against presidential abuse of power's voters may give him a pass but history will judge thech harshly. i will vote for the articles of impeachment. i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. it is with my privileged value to yield a minute to gentleman from georgia. >> gentleman's recognized for a minute and a half. >> i thank my colleague from georgia and friend mr. collins. madam speaker, i rise today in opposition not only to these articles of impeachment but in strong opposition to the process that has brought us to this point. our constitutional and bill of
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rights are all about process. our founders knew a government without constraints could accuse anyone of any crime at any time even without compelling evidence. that's why the fifth and 14th amendments establish add bedrock principle of incident until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. november 14th speaker pelosi informed the press the president should prove innocence when stated mr. president if you have anything that shows your innocence, he should make that known. the constitution also guarantees that the accused can call witnesses to testify on their behalf. but the republicans continually denied that right his identity kept secret. before you take this historic vote today, one week before christmas. keep this in mind. when jesus was falsely accused of treason pontius pilate gave
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jesus the opportunity to face his accusers. during that sham trial pontius pilate afforded more rights to jesus than democrats afforded this president and this process. i yield back. >> gentleman from new york. >> the president was given the opportunity to come and testify before the judiciary committee to send his counsel, question witnesses. he declined to do so. i now yield one minute to the gentleman from michigan. >> for one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. this is a sad day for our country and for our democracy. the president has abused the powers of his office, betrayed the public trust and undermined america's national security by pressuring a foreign government to interfere in our elections for his own political gain. in this moment in our history the constitution is clear. the remedy for such misconduct
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by a president is impeachment. i didn't come here to congress to impeach a president of the united states, but sadly, the president's misconduct leaves us no choice but to follow the constitution. i have two grandchildren. my granddaughter kaitlyn is 8 and my grandson colin is 4. some day a long time from now they'll ask me about this day. they'll ask about the time a president put himself above the law. and they'll want to know what i did to stop him. and i will have an answer for them. today i vote to uphold the constitution. i will vote to impeach donald trump. i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. it is interesting that the president was supposedly given rights by the judiciary committee but who would he ask
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questions of? a law professor and staff member? not a lot to process there. with that i yield back time. >> gentleman awarded a minute and a half. >> house democrats spent upwards of $30 million in three years trying to overturn the 2016 election of president trump and come up with nothing. because of their radical left wing democrats are willing to make all future presidential elections invalid until judged worthy by majority in the house of representatives. the president of the united states does not serve at the pleasure of the house of representatives. perhaps the greatest denial of reality regarding president trump is acknowledging that under his policies things are actually going much better than they have in decades for working americans. we are a democratic constitutional republic in which power flows from we the people to our president and elected officials. the democrat majority thinks otherwise. they believe that they're
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entitled to rule us, even if they have to change the rules to invalidate the will and votes of the people of america. that is why the absence of the case does not matter in this charade of impeachment. i believe the american people recognize and share my urgency about what is at stake here. madam speaker, you and your majority may decide today, but i have faith that the american people will decide oistherwise next november. i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker i yield one minute to the gentle lady from washington. >> gentle lady recognized for one minute. >> thank you, madam speaker. i rise today in support of this resolution. after carefully reviewing all of the evidence and the articles of impeachment before us, it is clear that president trump abused the power of the presidency and obstructed congress. i did not come to this
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conclusion lightly. impeachment is an extremely serious matter. but no president can be allowed to pressure a foreign country for personal and political gain. no president is above the law. his behavior has jeopardized the integrity of our elections, put our national security at risk and placed his personal interests above those of the american people. his obstruction has prevented the house from conducting its constitutional duty of oversight of the executive branch by failing to uphold his oath of office, president trump forces each of us as members of the house of representatives to uphold ours. i urge my colleagues to do just that and defend our democracy. i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. at this time i yield a minute and a half. >> gentleman recognized a minute and a half.
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>> thank you. i impose this impeachment articles and vote no on the articles of impeachment. i represent the fifth district of virginia, home to many founding fathers shaped the great country. thomas jefferson and james madson not around to see what their creation become but i don't think they would be pleased to see congress subverting democracy because the majority party simply cannot accept the 2016 election. instead of wasting money, addressed the securing the border, reduced student debt and solved a litany of other issues americans actually care about. tomorrow we might have the a vote on the usmca, should have passed months ago had it not been for democrats. made farmers and others in my district suffer. votes like the one taken today, decisions that led up to today's vote, nature and entire process of this proceeding wreaks of career politicians that put politics over people. i was not elected to take
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political votes that attempt to overturn the will of the american people. i ran for office to serve my constituents, let's remember that's why we are here. weaponizing a motion is not the way to serve the united states of america. to my colleague whose do just that i offer a quote thomas payne wrote in a crisis. to argue with a person renounced the use of reason is like at ministering medicine to the dead. thank you. i yield back balance of my time. gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker, i remind the gentleman that the house passed over 400 bills. 275 bipartisan bills. driving down health care and prescription drugs, taking on infrastructure and 80% of these bills languishing on senator mcconnell's desk. i yield one minute to the gentle lady from ohio. >> recognized for one minute. >> i 0 thank you the chairman for yielding and wish to place on the record that members of
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congress swear a solemn oath to protect and defend the constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic and today we fulfill our oath by defending liberty. the central figure testing america's resolve is not here in washington today. rather, the closeted villain sits in moscow at the kremlin. vladimir putin has coordinated murders, election hacking, propaganda, the entrapment of willing fools and greedy und underlings who put their own selfish interests over liberty. putin seeks to sow disagree and the nato alliance. at putin's direction, ukraine was illegally invaded and as ukraine defends itself, 14,000 people have been killed at putin's hand with over 2 million displaced. rather than stand up to putin, president trump and his minions aided putin first in hastening
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russian interference in 2016 elections and more recently withholding vital military aid from ukraine for mr. trump's personal gain. >> time expired. >> i end saying onward liberty. vote for the articles of impeachment. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. at this time i yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from north carolina. >> madam speaker, base lds articles of impeachment and the undemocratic process used to impeach the duly elected president of the united states. it is a mockery of american justice. in 1788 one of our founding fathers alexander hamilton wrote in the federalist papers, in many cases impeachment will connect itself with the preexisting factions and in such case there's will always be the greatest containinger that the decision will be regulated more by the comparable strength of parties, majority around minority than real demonstrat n
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demonstrations of innocence or guilt. it means that the majority can exert its influence regardless of justice. in this statement hamilton warned about the danger of mob rule. democrats have a criminal and have been searching for a crime for three years, but this president has not comitted a crime. as leader of american foreign policy the president has a constitutional obligation to root out corruption in countries to which we provide aid. this is not an abuse of power. it is his job. one of the articles is obstruction of congress. the only thing that's been obstructed is this president's right to due process. i don't blame the president for reyfusing to participate in a guilty until proven innocent. this is a tragic day in our nation's history. we have individuals that hate this president more than they love this country. our country needs prayer and not
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this destructive partisanship. thank you. i yield back. >> gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker, the president's obstruction is unprecedented and categorical. it president trump claims that the house cannot investigate his misconduct outside of impeachment inquiry. he defies local congressional subpoenas and then sues the third parties from complying with such subpoenas. even pursuing his own interests in court his administration simultaneously argues congress is barred from obtaining judicial enforcement when executive branch officials disregarded subpoenas. when can the president be held accountable for his wrongdoing? in his mind, never. the constitution, however, disagrees. a i yield one minute to the gentle lady from district of columbia. >> gentle lady is recognized for one minute.
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>> madam speaker, my words are my only remedy today in spite of the upcoming d.c. statehood vote we expect to be successful. the people of the district of columbia have no vote on impeach t thement or any other matter on this floor now. i spoke on this floor on the impeachment of president clinton 20 years ago. unlike the clinton impeachment on perjury concerning an affair with an intern, such impeachment turns on sabotage of national security to get himself re-elected. clinton repented. trump insists that he did nothing wrong. that's a promise to continue his long pattern of abuse of power and obstruction of congress. impeachment is our only recourse. i yield back. >> gentle lady yields back. ja fr gentleman? >> i yield.
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>> gentleman is recognized two minutes. >> thank you. today democrats low are the bar for impeachment. under the standard a president can be impeached in the absence of a crime without due process or asserted a legally constitutionally recognized privilege. history shows democrat presidents abused power undermined democracy and win elections yet have not been impeached. president frank lynn roosevelt used the internal revenue service. his son later admitted fdr used irs as a weapon of political retribution. president john f. kennedy used the fbi to wiretap opponents including congressional staff. deported one of his mistresses to avoid scandal. president lyndon johnson spied on goldwater's campaign signing off or wiretapening his opponent and goldwater's airplane and using a cia spy to ob stain advance copies of his speeches.
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president barack obama refwused to provide documents of fast and furious. unanimously struck down by the supreme court. he used national security agencies to lie to the american people about benghazi to win the 2012 election and spied on reporters, finally it was the obama administration committing 17 serious violations before the fisa court to spy on trump campaign associates. despite these clear abuses of power by fdr, jfk, lbj and obama, republicans did not impeach. why? because the framers did not want a low bar for impeachment. they wanted congress and the president to work out their differences. when i asked professor turley in a judiciary committee hearing if any president could avoid impeachment with this low standard? he said, no. i yield back. >> gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker, i remind the gentleman president obama provided thousands of pages of information to congressional requests that attorney general holder and others testified,
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unlike now. i now yield one minute to the -- to the gentle lady from illinois. >> gentle lady recognized for one minute. >> madam speaker, today is a solemn day in america. a day that none of us hoped for when we came to congress, but the events of today are something that each of us swore we were prepared to execute in defense of the constitution of the united states against all enemies, forren and domestic. this is the oath that bonds the men and women of the 116th congress at our democracy implores we defend her. a clear and present threat to american democracy is what brings us here. the architect, a president, who acted with a foreign agent to interfere in our election. our founding fathers' greatest
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fear. i was entrusted to uphold the constitution for them. i vote yes for sarah in chicago, doug in kankakee, die an in floss ps more, for kathy in mowmense and katherine and jimmy in park for effort. the facts are simple. the path forward is clear. impeachment is not an option. it is an obligation, because no one is above the law. i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. at this time my privilege to yield two minutes to the gentleman from pennsylvania. >> gentleman's recognized for two minutes. >> thank you, madam speaker and ranking member collins. in the navy we had a saying. bluff. bottom line up front. give you the bottom line. democrats are terrified president trump will win re-election. they can't beat him on the merits. the democrats are caving to their far left radical base and using the thoughts and feelings and assumptions of some unnamed
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bureaucrats rather than relying on facts and law to impeach am duly elected president. let me be clear. this is nothing more than a political hit job. i've been on all sides of the courtroom. i was a prosecutor in the navy, a defense attorney in the navy. a district judge. my hometown. let me tell you, as a lawyer, i would defend this case every day of the week. as a judge, i would dismiss this on day one for lack of merit. there's no prima facie case here. who i'd prosecute? adam schiff for abuse power. why? using chairman to leak phone records of devin nunes. and dumped 8,000ble -- the abuse of power. obstruction? i prosecute the democrats for
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obstruction. how about the fact that judiciary democrats voted down my request to subpoena the whistle-blower. how about the fact chairman nadler refused every single republican request for a fact witness. that is obstruction of congress. so again let me be clear. today is nothing more than a political hit job. thank you and i yield back. >> gentleman yields back. >> gentleman from new york. >> madam speaker, once again i hear a lot of attacks on members -- on democratic members of congress, but not one single word of substantive defense of the president's conduct. i now yield one minute to the distinguished gentleman from virginia. >> gentleman's recognized for one minute. >> madam speaker, each of us here took an oath to protect and defend the constitution of the united states. not the president and not our political party. today history will judge. did we abide that oath? to extort a foreign country to
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investigate your political opponent is an unconstitutional abuse of power. to solicit foreign interference in an american election is an unkonu unconstitutional abuse of power. the need to protect against just such abuses to grant sole power of impeachment to this house. the delicate balance of power, that underpins our democracy is threatened when a president disregards the constitution by obstructing congress' power to cover up illegal behavior, in doing that president trump violated his oath. today we must put country over party. conscience over complicity. today we much assert no one's above the law. today we are summon pd by history to do the right thing. i yield back. >> gentleman from georgia. >> thank you, madam speaker. really i know this is probably not true. speakers are not working on the majority side i talked about it
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and members talked about the facts. no pressure, no conditionality, no -- nothing ever denied kbh they got through actually got the money. never did anything for it. we have talked about the facts. that's a distraction doesn't need to happen. with that i yield a minute to gentleman from ohio. >> gentleman recognized for a minute and a half. >> madam speaker, i've heard numerous colleagues say they didn't run for congress to impeach the president. maybe not originally. unfortunately from the moment 3r0edings began after the fourth vote to launch an impeachment inquiry today's vote inevitable. many campaigned on it. i love this country with a soldier's passion. i came here to defend freedom not to deny due process to anyone. i came here to solve problems and change the broken status quo. not to distract or disrupt those like president donald trump hoot delivered on promises to put america back on the panel of peace and prosperity that made
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and kept our country free. for months now americans have heard speculation about the president's motives in ukraine. despite months of effort, dozens of hearings and count lds documents, americans have not seen proof that the president commit add high crime or a misdemeanor. we have a republican if we can keep it. this is disgraceful, dishonest process. it's a discredit to this body and to our nation. i urge the house to drop these divisive articles of impeachment and get to work for the american people. i yield. >> january yields back. >> madam speaker, tell me how much time both sides have left, please? >> gentleman from new york, 2 hours 2, minutes. jap from georgia has 2 hours and 3 minutes. >> madam speaker, i yield one minute to the gent many lady from new york. >> gentle lady recognized for
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one minute. >> madam speaker, the thoughts are clear. the president of the united states withheld $400 million in military aid to an ally of the united states and also held back a white house meeting to compel a foreign nation to investigate his political opponent. at the exact time that the president was doing this, ukraine was engaged in a battle for its very existence with one of america's adversaries, russia. the president abused his power to have a foreign nation dig up dirt on a political opponent and that's the truth. this was quite simply a geopolitical shakedown. the president then tried to block congress from exercising its constitutionally mandated duty to uncover the truth. every single one of us today faces a stark choice.
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