[Image Description: Silent video describing impeachment, transcript below]
by Ellanora Lerner
So Donald Trump got impeached. What's up with that?
Well... [image of Donald Trump] this is Donald Trump. The President of the United States. Which of course is a very powerful position. But the United States has 3 coequal branches of government. The Executive (led by the President). The Judicial (the courts). The Legislative (Congress). Let's talk more about Congress.
Congress. Congress is the U.S.'s legislature; comparable to Parliament in the UK or Canada. Congress is bicameral, meaning it has two houses. The House of Representatives. Senate. Right now... The House is controlled by Democrats (the liberal political party). The Senate is controlled by Republicans (the conservative political party).
Congress has powers which allow it to regulate the Executive branch, particularly it has the power of Impeachment and removal from office. Impeachment means an accusation of wrong-doing. It is done by the House of Representatives. And requires a simple majority (50% to pass). After a President is impeached, it is an additional step for them to be removed from office. This is done by the Senate. And requires a super majority (67% to pass).
On December 18th, 2019 the House of Representatives impeached President Donald Trump along party lines. He was impeached on two charges, formally referred to as articles of impeachment. Abuse of Power. The President withheld military aid and a White House meeting from Ukraine in an effort to get the country to publicly announce investigations into his political rivals. Obstruction of Justice. The President blocked certain people from testifying before Congress and refused to provide certain documents.
Next, there will be a trial in the Senate. This part of the process is controlled by Republicans, since they control the Senate. It's not clear when exactly this will happen since the Speaker (Leader) of the House Nancy Pelosi has threatened to delay delivering the articles to the Senate. This is because the Republicans have said they will not call witnesses that the Democrats want to be called. It is unlikely that the President will ultimately be removed since the Republicans control the Senate.
Regardless of what happens this is a historic event (that has only happened twice before). Keep watching the news, and keep checking Risen for new updates.
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