Things That Matter

The House Is Getting Ready To Vote On The Articles Of Impeachment And Here’s What That Means

After weeks of momentous hearings and testimonies, the House Judiciary Committee on Friday voted along party lines to pass two articles of impeachment against President Trump. As a reflection of the divide in Congress, all 23 Democrats voting in favor and all 17 Republicans voting against the charges. This moment has been a buildup that began back in September when evidence pointed to President Trump abusing his powers in pressuring Ukraine to investigate his political rival, Joe Biden.

The House is expected to approve the two articles of impeachment, one for abuse of power and the other for obstruction of Congress, on Wednesday, before lawmakers depart for the holidays. The historic vote would make President Trump the third president in U.S. history to be impeached and the first to be running for reelection at the same time. 

“Today is a solemn and sad day,” Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., said after the vote. “For the third time in a little over a century and a half, the House Judiciary Committee has voted articles of impeachment against the president for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. The House will act expeditiously.”

This is just the first step in many in what will be a weeks-long process that will ultimately lead to a vote in the U.S. Senate. 

Democratic lawmakers this week said that they didn’t come to Congress wanting to impeach a president, but they pointed to detailed evidence since the inquiry began in late September that led them to this point. This comes after multiple testimonies from diplomats, government officials, and legal scholars that all pointed at Trump abusing his powers as president. At the core of these charges is the assertion that the president had withheld approved military aid to Ukraine and then blocking Congress’ efforts to probe what happened.

Trump has denied these assertions and has said he acted justifiably in a phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Since the impeachment inquiry began, Republicans have been unified in dismissing the charges that Democrats have put forward calling the entire process a “hoax”. 

“Rather than help Americans move into the future with confidence, Democrats are attempting to knee-cap our democracy. They’re telling millions of voters that Democrats will work to overturn the will of the people whenever it conflicts with the will of liberal elites.”Rep. Doug Collins of Georgia, the ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee, said on Friday. 

 White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham voiced a similar tone as she called Friday’s vote a “shameful end” of what she labeled as a “desperate charade of an impeachment inquiry.”

“The President looks forward to receiving in the Senate the fair treatment and due process which continues to be disgracefully denied to him by the House,” Grisham said to ABC News.

While impeachment articles will most likely be passed in the Democrat-controlled House, the Republican-controlled Senate is where they will most likely find a roadblock moving forward. 

To this point in the impeachment process, there have been few surprises as things have followed as expected. With the articles of impeachment being sent to the House, there is little doubt that the votes won’t pass. As of today, there are 431 sitting members in the House and if all of those members are present, the number for impeaching President Trump would be 216. The Republican-controlled Senate presents a different problem for Democrats. A Senate trial would then begin to determine whether to remove President Trump from office or acquit him of the charges. 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky has given no indication to this point that any Republican will break against party lines. In an interview on Fox News on Thursday, McConnell said: “there is zero chance the president will be removed from office.”

Throughout weeks of hearings, Republicans said that Democrats overstated their case against Trump and made the argument that the relied heavily on hearsay evidence. Instead, they cast the president as genuinely concerned with corruption in Ukraine, which Democrats in return repeatedly dismissed.

Whatever happens, moving forward, there are sure to be serious political consequences for both parties ahead of the 2020 elections. 

There is much more than just impeachment on the line after the House votes. If everything follows as expected in a Senate trial, there might be more harm than good when it comes to Democrats, especially in an election year. Countless Americans are deeply divided over whether the president indeed conducted impeachable acts and will look to Congress to show clarity on this issue. 

Even for Republicans, the impeachment trial has been a bad look as the president has cast a troublesome veil over the part that might cast some independent voters to sway to the left in 2020. There is no telling how far or how long this impeachment trial will go on but there is no doubt Americans will be watching closely. 

READ: From Nipsey Hussle To Jose Jose, This Year We Had To Say Goodbye To Many Icons—Here’s A Roundup Of Celebrities Lost In 2019

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AOC Is Going To Be Speaking At The Democratic National Convention

Things That Matter

AOC Is Going To Be Speaking At The Democratic National Convention

Mario Tama / Getty Images

The Democratic National Convention is coming up and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has been given one of the prime time speaking slots. AOC represents an electorate within the Democratic Party that is desperate for real change and progressive values.

AOC is going to be speaking at the Democratic National Convention and people are pumped.

The Democratic National Convention is happening from August 17 to 20 and the list of speakers is out. AOC, the outspoken congresswoman, is one of the speakers in a prime time spot. The full line up is a wide-ranging swath of politicians including Republican John Kasich.

Speakers will cover both sides of the aisle.

Monday: Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, former Ohio Gov. John Kasich (a Republican who ran against Donald Trump in the 2016 GOP primary) and former first lady Michelle Obama

Tuesday: Former acting Attorney General Sally Yates, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, former President Bill Clinton and Jill Biden, the candidate’s spouse.

Wednesday: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, former President Barack Obama and the yet-unnamed vice presidential nominee.

Thursday: New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg, California Sen. Kamala Harris, the Biden family and the presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

Sen. Harris was recently announced as the vice-presidential nominee. This would mean that someone else would replace her on Thursday night. Rumors are circulating that it could be either Susan Rice or Stacey Abrams.

The DNC is receiving praise for offering up the slate of speakers.

The DNC is a virtual event this year because of Covid-19. If you want to watch the convention from August 17-20, you can watch it here. You can also check out the full schedule here so you know what you want to see.

READ: Joe Biden Calls Kamala Harris A ‘Fearless Fighter’ After Tapping Her To Be His Running Mate

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Joe Biden Speaks Alongside ‘Fearless Fighter’ Kamala Harris In First Appearance And Recalls Her Family’s Immigrant Story

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Joe Biden Speaks Alongside ‘Fearless Fighter’ Kamala Harris In First Appearance And Recalls Her Family’s Immigrant Story

Chip Somodevilla / Gettycc

After weeks of speculation and anticipation, presidential candidate Joe Biden announced on Tuesday that he has officially picked his running mate.

In a history-making announcement, Biden revealed that he had tapped California Sen. Kamala Harris to be his VP Pick.

“I have the great honor to announce that I’ve picked @KamalaHarris — a fearless fighter for the little guy, and one of the country’s finest public servants — as my running mate,” Biden announced in a tweet.

On Wednesday, Biden held his first campaign event alongside running mate Kamala Harris in Delaware.

During their speeches, the two candidates wore masks and kept their distance in keeping with COVID-19 standards.

Speaking about his VP pick, Biden described Harris as coming from an “America’s story.” Biden described Harris as “a child of immigrants” who “knows personally how immigrant families enrich our country as well as the challenges of what it means to grow up Black and Indian-American in the United States of America,” he explained. “And this morning, all across the nation, little girls woke up, especially little Black and brown girls that feel overlooked and undervalued in their communities, but today — today just maybe they’re seeing themselves for the first time in a new way as president and vice presidents.”

In a speech of her own, Harris emphasized the importance of family and urged citizens to vote.  “We need a mandate that proves that the past few years do not represent who we are or who we aspire to be,” she said. “Joe likes to say that character is on the ballot. And it’s true,” she explained. “I’ve had a lot of titles over my career and certainly vice president will be great. But ‘Momala’ will always be the one that means the most.”

Harris’s nomination makes her the first Black and first Indian-American woman on either major party’s presidential ticket.

Harris is a former prosecutor from California who challenged Biden in her own presidential bid last year. Her nomination makes her the fourth woman to appear on a major presidential ballot. Before her, Geraldine Ferraro ran as a Democratic vice presidential nominee in 1984. In 2008, Republican Sarah Palin ran as a vice presidential nominee, later in 2016, Hillary Clinton became the Democratic presidential nominee.

Biden’s choice was one that has long been in the works. In March of this year, he revealed that he would make a point to have a woman as his running mate and in July he announced that he had narrowed his picks down to four Black women.

Kamala Harris was elected to Congress in 2016.

This has been Harris’ first term as a senator. Before, she served as the California attorney general. During her time as AG, Harris formed a lasting friendship with Biden’s late son Beau who was attorney general at the time in Delaware. Writing about Beau’s death, in her memoir The Truths We Hold, Harris recalled that “there were periods when I was taking the heat when Beau and I talked every day, sometimes multiple times a day,” she wrote in her memoir. “We had each other’s backs.”

Biden’s son Beau died in 2015 from brain cancer. Harris attended his funeral.

During his announcement, Biden mentioned Harris’ friendship with his son.

“I watched as they took on the big banks, lifted up working people, and protected women and kids from abuse,” Biden tweeted. “I was proud then, and I’m proud now to have her as my partner in this campaign.”

So far, it seems there are quite a bit of Harris x Biden supporters.

Fans were quick to give their support and applaud her candidacy.

In a tweet acknowledging her nomination, Harris wrote “@JoeBiden can unify the American people because he’s spent his life fighting for us. And as president, he’ll build an America that lives up to our ideals. I’m honored to join him as our party’s nominee for Vice President, and do what it takes to make him our Commander-in-Chief.”

Here’s to 2020 y’all. Get ready to make history.

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