- Article 1, Section 2, Clause 5: "The House of Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment."
- Article 1, Section 3, Clauses 6 and 7: 'The Senate shall have the sole Power to try all Impeachments. When sitting for that Purpose, they shall be on Oath or Affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried the Chief Justice shall preside; And no Person shall be convicted without the Concurrence of two thirds of the Members present. Judgement in Cases of Impreachment shall not extend further than to removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States: but the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgement and Punishment, according to Law."
- Article 2, Section 4: "The President, Vice President and all Civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors."
Grounds for Impeachment
- Treason -- Article III, Section 3, Clause 1: "Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court."
- Bribery --offering, giving, soliciting, or receiving of any item of value as a means of influencing official actions. Relevant statute: FCPA -- a law that Trump dislikes
- Other High Crimes and Misdemeanors
Lindsey Graham explains:
“You don’t even need to be convicted of a crime. Impeachment is not about punishment. It’s about cleansing the office, about restoring honor and integrity to the office.”— 𝚋𝚊𝚡𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚋𝚎𝚊𝚗 (@TheBaxterBean) December 4, 2019
— Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham (Clinton impeachment manager) #ImpeachingHearings pic.twitter.com/IAEBME8bSV
Presidential impeachment activity in the late 20th centuryLindsey Graham calling for impeachment in 1999:— Public Citizen (@Public_Citizen) December 5, 2019
"He doesn't have to say, 'Go lie for me,' to be a crime. He doesn't have to say, 'Let's obstruct justice,' for it to be a crime. You judge people on their conduct, not a magic phrase." pic.twitter.com/SOoWLDnqND
- The memorandum (aka "rough transcript")
- Was it political? "REPORTER: Have you asked foreign leaders for any corruption investigations that don't involve your political opponents? TRUMP: "You know, we would have to look."
Why not wait?
- "If you have a house and somebody breaks your window and you do nothing about it, they may break another one and another one and another one." -- Rudy Giuliani, 1997
- The Russians are still trying to interfere
- Trump solicited Russian interference in 2016 and Chinese interference this year