House Democrats weigh vote to authorize impeachment inquiry
WASHINGTON (AP) — For only the fourth time in U.S. history, the House of Representatives has started a presidential impeachment inquiry. House committees are trying to determine if President Donald Trump violated his oath of office by asking a foreign country to investigate a political opponent.
Here’s a quick summary of the latest news:
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
— House Democrats are gauging support for a vote to formally authorize the impeachment inquiry. Trump and Republicans in Congress want to test Democrats with a vote that could be could be a difficult sell in areas where Trump remains popular.
— Hunter Biden, the son of former Vice President Joe Biden, rejected Trump’s assertions that he did anything wrong by engaging in foreign work in Ukraine and China. Biden blamed his father’s political opponents, including Trump, for spreading a “ridiculous conspiracy theory.”
— Two Florida businessmen who are tied to Trump’s lawyer and now face federal criminal charges were photographed with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis at his election night victory party last November. DeSantis spokeswoman Helen Ferre said the event was open to the public and said the governor hasn’t spoken to or met one-on-one with either man since taking office.
Michael McKinley, a former top aide to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, is scheduled to testify Wednesday. McKinley, a career foreign service officer, resigned Friday, ending a 37-year career.
NUMBERS THAT MATTER
12: The number of Democratic presidential contenders vying to replace Trump who will be onstage Tuesday night in Ohio for a televised debate. Impeachment is likely to be raised: Trump’s focus on investigating Biden sparked the impeachment inquiry.
How Biden handles the issue will be crucial if he is to avoid being haunted by it in the general election should he become the Democratic nominee. Some fellow Democrats onstage may press the issue of the work Biden’s son Hunter did for a Ukrainian energy company while Biden was vice president, hoping to damage the top-tier candidate’s prospects.
This animated primer produced by The Associated Press provides the basics of the impeachment process.