What is an Impeachment Inquiry?

On September 24, 2019, it was announced that an official impeachment inquiry would be launched in examination of president Donald Trump. But what goes into impeachment, anyway? Here are some important things to know:

  • The only people who have the power of impeachment are the House of Representatives.
  • In order for the House of Representatives to impeach a president, they must outline the allegations against the president (or articles of impeachment).
  • Impeachment does not necessarily mean that the president will be removed from office. This is done through conviction.
  • Conviction occurs only after an individual has been impeached. A positive conviction requires a supermajority (the agreement of ⅔ of all members).
  • If a president is convicted, it is then that they are removed from office.
  • Contrary to popular belief, it is not actually stated anywhere in the US constitution that the Vice President must take over for the president following conviction. However, this is generally what has happened in the history of presidents who have been impeached.
  • The plan to enact formal impeachment action against Donald Trump has been public knowledge since July 26, 2019.
  • Right now, the concern is whether or not President Donald Trump used access to aid as a way to persuade Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden, a candidate who is running in the 2020 federal election campaign.
  • Previously, the call for the impeachment of Mr. Trump had entered around campaign interference from Russia in the 2016 election.
  • The last impeachment inquiry that was held in the United States was in 1998 for President Bill Clinton. In the end, President Clinton was not impeached.

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