WASHINGTON — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Sunday called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s supporting a resolution to dismiss the two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump a “cover up.”
“The dismissing is a cover-up. Dismissing is a cover-up,” Pelosi said during an interview on ABC’s “This Week.” “If they want to go that route, again the senators who are thinking now about voting for witnesses or not, they will have to be accountable for not having a fair trial.”
McConnell signed onto a resolution from Republican Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri last week to allow for the dismissal of the obstruction of Congress and abuse of power charges against Trump because Pelosi has not yet transferred the articles to the Senate for a trial. Republicans don’t have the votes to dismiss the articles.
The California Democrat, who has so far withheld the articles as congressional leadership disagree on the shape of trial procedures, said in a letter to her caucus on Friday she was prepared to send the articles of impeachment this week.
Speaker says no ‘mystery’ on articles of impeachment
On Sunday, Pelosi said there’s no “mystery” surrounding her intention with the impeachment articles.
“I’ve always said I would send them over. There shouldn’t be any mystery to that,” she said.
It’s not clear whether Pelosi’s gambit to withold the articles will change the trajectory of the Senate trial. Democrats have pushed for the Senate to agree to hear from witnesses as part of the trial — before accusing McConnell of a cover-up for coordinating with the White House.
Pelosi said Sunday she did not have second thoughts about withholding the articles and is confident the move achieved a “very positive result,” including former White House national security adviser John Bolton saying he is prepared to testify in a Senate trial if subpoenaed. Trump on Friday said in an interview with Fox News that he would likely invoke executive privilege if Bolton were subpoenaed.
The House needs to pass a resolution naming impeachment managers before the articles are formally sent to the Senate, and the chamber will also have to take procedural steps before the trial gets underway.