Senate Can Acquit Even If House Withholds Articles of Impeachment

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) appears to be considering an idea Democrats have floated for several days of holding back the articles of impeachment to exercise leverage over the Senate and the president.

She declined formally to transmit the articles to the Senate on Wednesday evening after the House voted to impeach President Donald Trump.

Unfortunately for them, the Senate can act, regardless — and would vote to acquit.

That’s because the Constitution is absolutely clear about the Senate’s authority. Article I, Section 3 says: “The Senate shall have the sole Power to try all Impeachments.”

That is all.

The Chief Justice presides over a trial involving the president, but the Senate makes the rules. And the Senate is controlled by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who regards what the House has done with contempt.

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