Trump’s impeachment trial to begin February 8

Donald ’s impeachment trial will begin in the second week of February in the Senate, after the former president’s indictment is transmitted to the upper house early next week, Democratic leaders in Congress said on Friday. . This two-week delay between the delivery of the indictment and the start of the proceedings will ensure that the trial does not monopolize the sessions in the upper house for the start of Joe Biden’s term.

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The Senate will thus be able in particular to confirm the members of its government.

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The indictment sent on Monday

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“Once the files have been drafted, the presentation by the parties will begin the week of February 8”, Chuck Schumer, the Democratic leader of the Senate, where Donald Trump is to be tried for “incitement to insurgency”, said Friday evening. Chuck Schumer had previously clarified to his colleagues that the indictment “would be sent to the Senate on Monday”.

“Our prosecutors are ready to defend their case before the 100 senators who will serve as judges during the trial,” Ms. Pelosi then confirmed in a statement.

Concretely, these “prosecutors” – elected Democrats of the House led by Jamie Raskin – will cross the corridors of Congress on Monday to bring the indictment in the chamber of the Senate, where they will read it to the senators. This step marks the formal opening of the trial, but the debates on the merits will therefore not begin until two weeks later.

A qualified majority still uncertain

Donald Trump is accused of having encouraged his supporters to launch an assault on Capitol Hill on January 6, when the elected representatives of Congress certified the victory of his Democratic rival in the presidential election. “You will never take back our country by being weak. You must show strength and you must be strong”, he had launched to his supporters shortly before they invaded the Capitol, sowing chaos and violence. Five people died during this attack.

A week later, Donald Trump became the first president in U.S. history to be impeached twice by the Democrat-controlled House. This time, some elected Republicans were very critical. Even the leader of the Republicans in the Senate, Mitch McConnell, who was one of his strongest allies during his presidency, has made it known that he does not rule out finding him guilty.

But the Constitution imposes a two-thirds threshold for convicting a president, and it would take 17 Republican senators to join the 50 Democrats to achieve that qualified majority, which is very uncertain at this point. If Donald Trump were found guilty, he would not be impeached since he has already left the White House, but he would become ineligible, as he has toyed with the idea of ​​a new presidential candidacy in 2024.

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