The U.S. House of Representatives, on a party line vote Wednesday night, approved two articles of impeachment against President Donald J. Trump, making him the third president in U.S. history to be impeached.
The issue now moves to the Republican-controlled U.S. Senate where members will hold a trial. But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has not said when she will send the articles to the Senate.
Pelosi, wearing black to symbolize that this is a dark day in the country’s history, banged down the wooden gavel, saying that both articles of impeachment had been approved in the House as members milled around waiting for the final results.
The vote in the House follows a vote earlier this month by the House Judiciary Committee that approved the two articles of impeachment.
Article I charged President Trump with abuse of power by soliciting the interference of a foreign government in the political affairs of the United States.
Article II charged that President Trump obstructed Congress, one of three equal branches of government outlined in the U.S. Constitution. The Executive and Judicial Branches are the other branches of government.
“Donald J. Trump has directed the unprecedented, categorical, and indiscriminate defiance of lawful subpoenas issued by the House of Representatives pursuant to its sole power of impeachment,” states Article II of impeachment.
If Trump is convicted of impeachment, he will be removed from office. Vice President Mike Pence then will be sworn in as president, serving out the remainder of Trump’s term.
Trump is one of three presidents who have been impeached. The other two were Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton. Both escaped conviction for impeachment.