History was being made Tuesday, or so they say in the media, but Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) wasn’t even present, Breitbart reported.
Nadler flew to New York to attend to his ailing wife as the House Rules Committee met for the final impeachment hearing in the House.
The chairman returned to D.C. in time for the full House vote to impeach President Donald Trump on Wednesday, according to the Washington Examiner.
Nadler misses impeachment hearing
The Tuesday hearing was convened to establish the rules for a final marathon debate on two articles of impeachment against Donald Trump. Nadler’s Judiciary Committee approved both articles last week, one for “abuse of power” and another for obstruction of Congress, after several contentious, partisan hearings.
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) appeared on Nadler’s behalf to present the articles to the Rules Committee, overseen by chairman Jim McGovern (D-MA).
The debate largely re-hashed partisan disagreements, with Republicans accusing Democrats of wanting to overturn the 2016 election and Democrats warning, in McGovern’s words, that Congress was there to decide if America is “a nation where no one is above the law or whether America is allowed to become a land run by those who act like kings and queens.”
Democrats on the committee voted to approve six hours of debate on the articles of impeachment, with equal time for Democrats and Republicans, overseen by Nadler and Judiciary ranking member Doug Collins (R-GA), UPI reported. Democrats could also adopt a resolution to appoint impeachment managers for the Senate trial, likely including Nadler and Adam Schiff (D-CA).
The House gathered at 9 a.m. Wednesday for what Democrats and members of the media have called a “solemn” and “historic” occasion. But the day is expected to bring few surprises as Democrats move to impeach the president in a party-line vote that will harden the partisan divisions that have become a fact of life in the Trump era.
Republicans made a last-minute motion to adjourn as the debate kicked off Wednesday morning that failed along party lines, Fox reported. A resolution to condemn the manner in which Nadler and Schiff have handled impeachment, introduced by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), also faltered.
Even before Wednesday’s vote, a controversy began brewing over the looming Senate trial as Democrats dialed up the pressure on Republicans to convict Trump. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) gave every indication that he would move to exonerate the president Tuesday, shooting down a list of witnesses from Chuck Schumer (D-NY) as he declared “I’m not an impartial juror.”
The night before impeachment proved to be an eventful one as Trump sent a blistering letter to Nancy Pelosi pleading his innocence and accusing her of an “open war on American democracy.” The president told his side of the story, retracing how Democrats have sought to remove him from power since the day he was elected in a ruthless war against him that, Trump said, few people would be able to withstand.
“You are the ones interfering in America’s elections. You are the ones subverting America’s Democracy. You are the ones Obstructing Justice. You are the ones bringing pain and suffering to our Republic for your own selfish personal, political, and partisan gain,” Trump wrote.