House Democrats said today that the House will vote Thursday to formalize procedures for the next phase of the impeachment inquiry into President Trump.
Democrats said the move would “ensure transparency and provide a clear path forward” as the inquiry continues.
It marks a shift for Democrats, who have resisted for weeks the idea of holding a vote on the impeachment inquiry, arguing that doing so was unnecessary to authorize their work, and privately worrying that doing so could put politically vulnerable Democrats in a difficult position.
But public polling in recent weeks has been on the Democrats side, showing over half of voters support both the impeachment and removal of Trump from office.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam B. Schiff (D-Calif.), meanwhile, said that a former deputy national security adviser had “no basis in law” to skip a deposition today and that his failure to appear was further evidence of Trump’s efforts to obstruct Congress.
Charles Kupperman, who served as a deputy to former national security adviser John Bolton, filed a lawsuit Friday seeking guidance from a federal judge about whether he should listen to the executive branch, which has told him not to attend, or to Congress.
Since there has not yet been a ruling, he declined to appear.
Kupperman listened in to the July 25 call in which Trump pressed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate former vice president Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden.
That call is at the center of the impeachment inquiry, which Trump and his Republican allies continued to attack Monday as unfair.
Democrats have likened the early stages of the impeachment inquiry to closed grand-jury proceedings.
Republicans signaled they would oppose the measure en masse.
Shortly after the vote was announced, Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, the top House Republican, said Democrats called the announcement “an admission that this process has been botched from the start,” and said Republicans “will not legitimize” it.
Democrats say transcripts will be made available later and some witnesses will be recalled to provide public testimony.
Attribution:The Washington Post