After nearly two months of hearings, Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee are finishing up debate on articles of impeachment for President Trump, and are almost ready to hold what's expected to be a party-line vote to approve the articles, and send them to the House to lock in Trump's impeachment before everybody leaves for the holidays.
As Bloomberg reports, the Committee is set to finish debating the articles of impeachment on Thursday with a likely party-line vote to send the resolution to the floor of the House. Republicans are expected to put forward a batch of amendments to the articles, which the Dems should easily beat back, before the final vote is taken.
Members of the Judiciary Committee are expected to reconvene at 9 am on Thursday to finish debate and take the final vote.
Trump is just the third president in American history to face impeachment. Once the articles are out of Committee, the full House will have an opportunity to debate, then vote, on the measure.
Despite being outnumbered, Republicans are expected to put up a vigorous debate on Thursday as they jockey for attention from Fox News.
Georgia Rep. Doug Collins, the top Republican on the Judiciary, said the Democrats' drive to impeach Trump is based on "vague statements" from witnesses and no evidence.
"The real legacy of this impeachment hearing will not be the removal of Donald Trump as president," he said. "The real legacy will be the institutional damage to this institution."
As we reported on Tuesday, Dems accused President Trump of "corruptly soliciting" Ukraine for the benefit of his reelection campaign, nevermind that Joe Biden is already preparing to play defense against the Republicans' claims by throwing staffers under the bus.
Jerry Nadler, the Chairman of the Judiciary Committee and a Rep. from upstate New York, has used the impeachment drive as grounds to make many grandstanding speeches. And we imagine there will be plenty more this morning as Dems prepare to hold Trump accountable for his alleged "abuses of power."
"Over the past 94 days since the House investigation began - indeed, over the past three years - one indisputable truth has emerged: If we do not respond to President Trump’s abuses of power, the abuses will continue," Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler said as he opened the hearing.
In response, Republicans are expected to show no crime or misconduct by Trump meriting impeachment. Impeach is merely a plot by Dems to influence the vote, a ploy that polls have clearly shown has failed to win the confidence of the public.
Collins said he expects Trump to survive impeachment, and go on to win a second term. "I do believe he will be president for five more years," he said.
Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz said that "with no crime, no victim, House Democrats impeach because they have no agenda for America." "Republicans will face this "with our heads held high," he added. "We’ll see you on the field in 2020."
Some made it sound more personal, accusing Dems of going after Trump "because they don't like us."
"It’s not just because they don’t like the president, they don’t like us," Said Jim Jordan, a key player in the impeachment drama. He added that Democrats disdain "all of us in flyover country, all of us common folk in Ohio, Wisconsin, Tennessee and Texas."
Whatever happens, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he’s confident Trump will be acquitted in the Senate.
And although Trump's team is said to be considering skipping witnesses at his trial, we expect it to be a Trumpian political circus for the ages to kick off the near year - and the new decade.