Here are 7 key details about the Democrats' resolution codifying the impeachment process

Here are 7 key details about the Democrats' resolution codifying the impeachment process
Gage Skidmore

House Democrats released a resolution on Tuesday outlining broad procedures for the ongoing impeachment proceedings.


Passage of the resolution by the full House would undermine a key Republican argument against the impeachment inquiry thus far, because President Donald Trump and his allies have repeatedly asserted, without much basis, that the proceedings are illegitimate without a vote of the entire body. Nevertheless, the new resolution is unlikely to quiet these objections.

The resolution also outlines some key procedural points that could be significant as the process proceeds. A vote is expected on the resolution on Thursday.

Here are seven key points you should know about the resolution.

1. The vote would officially confirm the existence of multiple impeachment inquiries into Trump.

Resolved, That the Permanent Select Committee on 2 Intelligence and the Committees on Financial Services,  Foreign Affairs, the Judiciary, Oversight and Reform, and Ways and Means, are directed to continue their ongoing investigations as part of the existing House of Representatives inquiry into whether sufficient grounds exist for the House of Representatives to exercise its Constitutional power to impeach Donald John Trump, President of the United States of America

This gives the official inquiry an extremely broad scoop, encompassing all the investigations that the committees are pursuing.

2. In the House Intelligence Committee, where the impeachment inquiry is focused, Democratic Chair Adam Schiff and Republican Ranking Member Devin Nunes will both be granted extra time to question witnesses outside of normal procedure, at Schiff's discretion.

 the chair and ranking minority member of the Permanent Select Committee shall be permitted to question witnesses for equal specified periods of longer than five minutes, as determined by the chair ... each period of questioning shall not exceed 90 minutes in the aggregate.

While this gives a Democrat the sole authority to extend the question time, it guarantees that he can't extend it without also giving the same amount of additional time to the Republicans. This allows the committees to give counsel extended time to interview witnesses.

3. In the Intelligence Committee, Republicans will be allowed to request Schiff, the chair, that witnesses appear, but they'll have to explain why the witness is relevant to the inquiry.

To allow for full evaluation of minority witness requests, the ranking minority member may submit to the chair, in writing, any requests for witness testimony relevant to the investigation described in the first section of this resolution within 72 hours after notice is given for the first hearing designated pursuant to paragraph (1). Any such request shall be accompanied by a detailed written justification of the relevance of the testimony of each requested witness to the investigation

4. If Schiff turns down a Republican request for a witness or a subpoena, the ranking member can put the question up to a full vote of the committee.

In the case that the chair declines to concur in a proposed action of the ranking minority member pursuant to subparagraph (A), the ranking minority member shall have the right to refer to the committee for decision the question whether such authority shall be so exercised

This means if Democrats, who are in the majority, stay united, they will be able to block GOP efforts to bring in witnesses. The same procedure will be in effect for the Judiciary Committee.

5. We'll be getting a "Ukraine report."

The Permanent Select Committee is directed to issue a report setting forth its findings and any recommendations and appending any information and materials the Permanent Select Committee may deem appropriate with respect to the investigation described in the first section of this resolution. The chair shall transmit such report and appendices, along with any supplemental, minority, additional, or dissenting views filed pursuant to clause 2(l) of rule XI, to the Committee on the Judiciary and make such report publicly available in electronic form, with appropriate redactions to protect classified and other sensitive information.

So Schiff will be compiling the evidence and allegations against Trump in the Ukraine scandal, and perhaps other related matters, likely to be seen as a repeat of sorts of the Mueller Report.

6. The resolution designates the House Judiciary Committee to draft articles of impeachment, as has been expected.

The House authorizes the Committee on the Judiciary to conduct proceedings relating to the impeachment inquiry referenced in the first section of this resolution pursuant to the procedures submitted for printing in the Congressional Record by the chair of the Committee on Rules, including such procedures as to allow for the participation of the President and his counsel.

7. It will be up to the Judiciary Committee, run by Chair Jerry Nadler, which articles to recommend for a full House vote.

The Committee on the Judiciary shall report to the House of Representatives such resolutions, articles of impeachment, or other recommendations as it deems proper.

Any articles that are passed will move on to the Senate for a trial.

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