Today, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to impeach President Trump. Two articles of impeachment passed, mostly along party lines.
The Texas delegation voted strictly along party lines, with Democrats voting in favor of both articles of impeachment and Republicans voting against them.
The resolution, H.Res.775, resolved to impeach the president for allegedly committing “high crimes and misdemeanors.”
Article I, labeled “Abuse of Power,” accuses the president of soliciting “the interference of a foreign government, Ukraine, in the 2020 United States Presidential election.”
Specifically, the article accuses the president of pressuring Ukraine to investigate claims of corruption related to Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden, in exchange for foreign aid that had been authorized by Congress.
Article II, labeled “Obstruction of Congress,” accuses Trump of directing executive branch authorities to not cooperate with the House impeachment inquiry.
The transcript of a phone call in July between Trump and the Ukrainian president, which was publicly released by the White House, has been a focal point of the impeachment proceedings.
Those in favor of impeachment have pointed to the transcript as evidence of a “quid pro quo” scheme where the president is asking for a personal favor.
However, the president and his supporters have argued that the requests were not about a personal favor, but about addressing corruption in the Ukrainian government and concerns over possible interference in the 2016 election — both being described as justifiable national priorities.
The two articles passed through the House Judiciary Committee along party-lines.
Over the weekend, the committee also released a lengthy report detailing the charges against Trump.
Reps. Colin Allred (D-TX-32) and Lizzie Fletcher (D-TX-07), both first-term members who won their seats from Republican incumbents, dispelled rumors that they might vote against the articles of impeachment when they released statements saying otherwise last week.
“After reviewing the evidence and testimony delivered to Congress, I have determined that the articles of impeachment are appropriate,” said Allred. “Next week I intend to vote yes, as it is clear the President engaged in an abuse of his authority, putting himself above the law, and his personal interests above the nation’s.”
Fletcher released a similar statement: “It is central to our very foundations that no individual, including and especially the President, is above the law. As a member of Congress, I also swore an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. And that is why, when the articles of impeachment are presented in the House, I will vote yes on both.”
Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX-28) was the last Democrat in the Texas delegation to commit to a particular vote. On Wednesday morning, he stated that he planned to vote yes on both articles, saying, “A failure to vote yes would be a repudiation of my Constitutional responsibility to check the President and balance our democracy.”
Some Democrats had hoped that Will Hurd (R-TX-23) would vote in favor of impeachment since he had been critical of the president’s foreign policy, but Hurd voted in line with the other Republicans.
“Today, a dangerous precedent will be set: impeachment becoming a weaponized political tool,” said Hurd during a speech on the House floor today. “We know how this partisan process will end this evening, but what happens tomorrow? Can this chamber put down our swords and get back to work for the American people?”
Texas Members Who Voted For Both Articles of Impeachment:
- Lizzie Fletcher (D-TX-07)
- Al Green (D-TX-09)
- Vicente González (D-TX-15)
- Veronica Escobar (D-TX-16)
- Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX-18)
- Joaquin Castro (D-TX-20)
- Henry Cuellar (D-TX-28)
- Sylvia Garcia (D-TX-29)
- Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX-30)
- Colin Allred (D-TX-32)
- Marc Veasey (D-TX-33)
- Filemon Vela, Jr. (D-TX-34)
- Lloyd Doggett (D-TX-35)
Texas Members Who Voted Against Both Articles of Impeachment:
- Louie Gohmert (R-TX-01)
- Dan Crenshaw (R-TX-02)
- Van Taylor (R-TX-03)
- John Ratcliffe (R-TX-04)
- Lance Gooden (R-TX-05)
- Ron Wright (R-TX-06)
- Kevin Brady (R-TX-08)
- Michael McCaul (R-TX-10)
- Mike Conaway (R-TX-11)
- Kay Granger (R-TX-12)
- Mac Thornberry (R-TX-13)
- Randy Weber (R-TX-14)
- Bill Flores (R-TX-17)
- Jodey Arrington (R-TX-19)
- Chip Roy (R-TX-21)
- Pete Olson (R-TX-22)
- Will Hurd (R-TX-23)
- Kenny Marchant (R-TX-24)
- Roger Williams (R-TX-25)
- Michael Burgess (R-TX-26)
- Michael Cloud (R-TX-27)
- John Carter (R-TX-31)
- Brian Babin (R-TX-36)
Notably, some Democrats voted against impeachment.
Reps. Jeff Van Drew (D-NJ), who is rumored to be joining the Republican Party, and Collin Peterson (D-MN) both voted against the resolution. Both members had also voted against the resolution to formalize the impeachment inquiry in October.
Rep. Jared Golden (D-ME) voted in favor of the first article but against the second.
Rep. Justin Amash (I-MI), a conservative-libertarian who left the Republican Party earlier this year, voted in favor of the impeachment.
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), a Democratic presidential candidate, voted present for both articles.
With the impeachment passing the House of Representatives, a trial will begin soon in the Senate, presuming the House sends the articles to the upper chamber immediately.
Some Democrats are allegedly considering delaying the release of the articles to negotiate the terms of the trial process in the Senate.
When the trial begins, Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts will preside over it.
Removing Trump from office will require a two-thirds majority vote from the Senate. 47 senators caucus with the Democratic Party and 53 senators are Republicans.
Given the partisan nature of the impeachment proceedings, removal is extremely unlikely.
Daniel Friend is a reporter for The Texan. While recently finishing his degree in Political Science from Azusa Pacific University, he also interned in the U.S. Senate and co-authored a book on C. S. Lewis’s science fiction trilogy. In his spare time, he might be reading up on Dostoevsky or attempting to write a novel.