This week in politics, the Iowa caucuses went off without a hitch and President Trump boasted that the economy is the “best it has ever been” during last night’s State of the Union address.
In other news from the upside-down, this afternoon, Trump’s Senate impeachment trial will meet its swift end after months of back and forth between Democratic and Republican leaders. Curious what’s going on, in case you’ve tuned it all out or just can’t keep it straight? Below, answers to your questions on the status of President Trump’s impeachment.
I’m lost. What’s happened lately?
A lot. In short, over the last two weeks, the Senate has had a busy schedule which included hearing opening arguments by Democratic managers and Trump’s defense team, a session of written questions prepared by the Senators, a debate over whether witnesses would be called to testify (like former National Security Advisor John Bolton), and a series of closing arguments by lead House Manager Adam Schiff and Trump’s defense attorney, Jay Sekulow.
Oh shit. What’s happening today then?
This morning, leaders including Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer offered closing statements in advance of the Senate’s vote on whether to convict President Trump or acquit him of charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. According to the Constitution, it’d require a two-thirds majority to remove a president—but don’t hold your breath. Republicans hold a majority in the Senate and Trump is expected to be acquitted mostly along party-lines, as NPR writes.
Did Trump address his impeachment during his State of the Union address?
No, but he did speak about the stock market, job creation, and the economy a lot, and also criticized Medicare For All and cities in America which have provided sanctuary for “criminal illegal aliens.” Shortly after his address, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tore up a copy of his speech. (If you want to read a transcript, the New York Times has an intact copy.)