WASHINGTON – The House Judiciary Committee released the full report early Monday from the inquiry that led it to approve two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump in a party-line vote last week.
The 658-page report was made public days before articles of impeachment for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress are expected to come before the House floor for a vote. The Democrat-led House is expected to approve the articles of impeachment against Trump.
The report outlines the process that led the committee to approve the articles of impeachment against Trump, the constitutional grounds for the impeachment and the evidence for the two charges against the president.
“The first article charges that the President used the powers of his office to solicit and pressure a foreign government, Ukraine, to investigate his domestic political rival and interfere in the upcoming United States Presidential elections,” reads the report’s introduction. “The second article charges that the President categorically obstructed the Congressional impeachment inquiry into his conduct.
The report said Trump is “engaged in a pattern of misconduct that will continue if left unchecked” that therefore the committee had to act ahead of the 2020 election.
“We cannot rely on the next election as a remedy for presidential misconduct when the President is seeking to threaten the very integrity of that election. We must act immediately,” it said.
“His actions warrant his impeachment and trial, his removal from office, and his disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust, or profit under the United States.”
The Judiciary Committee Democrats said the obstruction charge was warranted because by refusing to cooperate with congressional investigators, Trump “sought to write the Impeachment Clause out of the Constitution.”
“In the history of our Republic, no President has obstructed Congress like President Trump. If President Nixon’s obstruction of Congress raised a slippery slope concern, we now find ourselves at the bottom of the slope, surveying the damage to our Constitution,” they concluded. “That damage is extraordinary.”
The report also includes dissenting views from the Republican minority on the Judiciary Committee, which concluded the president “has neither abused the power granted to him by the American people nor obstructed Congress.”
The Republicans said the charges rested on “paltry” evidence and were “an affront to the constitutional process of impeachment.” They blasted the process as unfair and warned that if “the gravest constitutional remedy” is open to “political exploitation,” it would throw the House “into an endless cycle of impeachment.”
“The quicker the Majority Report and the Majority’s actions are forgotten, the better,” the minority report concludes. “As House Judiciary Republicans have repeatedly stated, this institution should move on to working for the American people and forego this exercise of overturning 63 million of the votes cast on November 8, 2016.”