House inches closer to historic impeachment vote with Rules Committee hearing


iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — As the House prepares to bring impeachment articles to the floor against the president for just the third time in American history, more than half of the Democrats from districts won by President Donald Trump in 2016 are planning to back impeachment.At least 17 Trump-district House Democrats have announced plans to vote for articles of impeachment charging Trump with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress in the Ukraine affair.Michigan Rep. Elissa Slotkin, one of those Democrats from a Trump-won district, faced jeers at a town hall Monday after announcing her decision to support impeachment. Fellow freshmen Max Rose, of New York, and Elaine Luria, of Virginia, are also among that group.Another 13 have not officially stated their position, or responded to ABC News requests for comment on how they plan to vote.The charges will be taken up on Tuesday morning by the House Rules Committee, the small panel tasked with preparing legislation and setting the terms for debate on the House floor.It’s the first time in American history that the panel, which is traditionally used by the speaker to control the floor schedule of the chamber, has ever taken up impeachment.The committee, which can hear testimony from any member of the House, is expected to spend much of Tuesday huddled in their hearing room on the top floor of the U.S. Capitol with Chairman Jim McGovern, D-Mass. After dozens of hours of hearings and testimony, Tuesday’s hearing will be the last opportunity for House Republicans and Democrats to spar over the charges before they’re taken up on the floor.The panel will determine how much time the House spends debating both articles on Wednesday, ahead of a vote that will send the charges to the Senate to tee up a trial early next year.The vote in the Democrat-controlled House is expected to pass once brought to the floor.The House Judiciary Committee voted on Dec. 13 along party lines to approve two articles of impeachment against Trump, for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

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