WASHINGTON — Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., announced Wednesday that Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., and Rep. Adam B. Schiff, D-Calif., will be among 7 House members prosecuting the case against President Donald Trump in the Senate impeachment trial.
Pelosi also named Democratic Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., Reps. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., Jason Crow, D-Colo., Val Demings, D-Fla., and Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas.
“The emphasis is on litigation. The emphasis is on comfort level in the court room,” Pelosi said after describing the legal experience of her choices.
The so-called House managers, give opening and closing statements, layout the facts collected in the House investigation, and will cross examine witnesses if they are allowed.
Pelosi was said to be aiming for a more diverse group than the 13 white men who acted as House managers during the Clinton impeachment trial in 1999.
Later Wednesday the House is expected to vote to approve Pelosi’s choices. Once that happens, the articles of impeachment passed by the House in December will be formally brought by the managers to the Senate, which is tasked with weighing whether to remove Trump from office.
It is just the third time in U.S. history the Senate has been asked to decide whether allegations against a president warrant conviction and removal.
The articles, one for obstruction of Congress and another for abuse of power, were brought following an investigation into Trump’s attempt to get the president of Ukraine to open investigations into his political rivals at the same time he was withholding nearly $400 million in aid to Ukraine. Trump says that there was nothing untoward about his conversations with the president or his handling of the aid.
The initial procedural motions of the Senate trial, including the swearing in of Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and the performance of a special oath senators must abide by, are expected to occur Thursday. Opening arguments from the House managers and the White House lawyers are expected to begin Tuesday.
Republicans control the Senate, and with 67 votes needed to remove a president from office, it is all but certain Trump will be acquitted.
©2020 Los Angeles Times. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.