President Donald Trump became the third president to be impeached by the House as Democrats approved two articles of impeachment against Trump on Wednesday.
The final vote shows that both articles were approved without any GOP support.
A simple majority of representatives was all House Democrats needed to forward articles of impeachment to the Senate. The Republican-held chamber will then decide on whether Trump should be removed from office. With a two-thirds majority needed for removal, the likelihood that enough Republicans would join Senate Democrats to remove Trump from the White House is highly unlikely.
Trump joins Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton as the only presidents to be impeached by the House. Both presidents survived their respective trials in the Senate.
The alleged offenses Trump committed according to House Democrats were abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. The House voted to approve an article of impeachment related to abuse of power. The House will now consider the article of impeachment related to obstruction of Congress.
Wednesday's all-day debate largely went as predicted, with both parties digging into to familiar talking points.
For Democrats, members echoed that Trump abused his power and violated his oath of office by asking Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter after Hunter Biden accepted a job with a Ukranian company while the vice president pushed for the ouster of a Ukrainian prosecutor. Democrats claim that by asking for an investigation, Trump was asking a foreign power to interfere in next year's U.S. presidential election, which includes Biden as a candidate.
Democrats claimed that by Trump ordering White House officials not to testify before Congress, that resulted in obstructing Congressional oversight.
Meanwhile, Republicans claimed that House Democrats were looking for any reason to impeach Trump, and did not follow a proper process by pushing the impeachment through the House. Several GOP members said during their floor speeches that Democrats have not proven that Trump had committed an impeachable offense.
Two Democrats joined the Republican caucus in voting against both articles of impeachment, with a third Democrat voting against the second article of impeachment. The lone independent, Justin Amash, joined the Democratic majority in supporting the articles.
The White House issued the following statement after Wednesday's vote:
"Today marks the culmination in the House of one of the most shameful political episodes in the history of our Nation. Without receiving a single Republican vote, and without providing any proof of wrongdoing, Democrats pushed illegitimate articles of impeachment against the President through the House of Representatives. Democrats have chosen to proceed on this partisan basis in spite of the fact that the President did absolutely nothing wrong. Indeed, weeks of hearings have proved that he did nothing wrong.
"Throughout the House Democrats’ entire sham impeachment, the President was denied fundamental fairness and due process under the law. The House blatantly ignored precedent and conducted the inquiry in secrecy behind closed doors so that Chairman Adam Schiff and his partisan political cronies could selectively leak information to their partners in the media to push a false narrative.
"When public hearings were held before Chairman Schiff’s committee, Democrats continued their games and denied the President the ability to cross-examine witnesses or present witnesses or evidence. The proceedings in the Judiciary Committee included no fact witnesses at all and consisted solely of a biased law seminar and a staffer rehashing the slanted report that was produced by Chairman Schiff’s rigged proceeding. This unconstitutional travesty resulted in two baseless articles of impeachment that lack any support in evidence and fail even to describe any impeachable offense.
"All of these antics make clear that Democrats have lost sight of what this country needs, which is a Congress that works for the people. Their boundless animus for President Trump fuels their desire to nullify the 2016 election results, and improperly influence the 2020 election.
"The American people are not fooled by this disgraceful behavior. They understand fairness, due process, and substantial, reliable evidence are required before any American should be charged with wrongdoing—and certainly before impeaching a duly elected President.
"The President is confident the Senate will restore regular order, fairness, and due process, all of which were ignored in the House proceedings. He is prepared for the next steps and confident that he will be fully exonerated. President Trump will continue to work tirelessly to address the needs and priorities of the American people, as he has since the day he took office."