Konstantin Kosachev, who chairs the International Affairs Committee of the Russian parliament’s upper chamber, said the impeachment procedure of Donald Trump was the goal in and of itself for the Democratic Party, as the Senate will certainly block it.
On Wednesday, the US House of Representatives voted to approve both articles of Trump’s impeachment - abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, TASS reports.
"There can be no doubt that the impeachment procedure, launched by the Democrats is not about removing him from power, it is about preventing him from being re-elected. In this situation, the procedure is the goal in and of itself," he told reporters, commenting on the results of the vote.
He said that the impeachment procedure requires support from no less than two thirds of senators. The Republican party hold 53 seats in the Senate out of 100 and "will easily block an attempt to oust its candidate, even if they also have issues with him."
"There is apparent irony in accusing Trump of power abuse: I can't recall any other president whose actions would be as limited as those of the current [leader]. He has more problems with ‘using’ his power than with ‘abusing’ it," he said. "But this does not stop the Democrats: they are forced to go all-in and will make the most out of this ‘impeachment show.’"
The indictment, prepared as a result of the investigation in the Legal Committee, will be transferred to the Senate, where the procedure will turn into a trial. It will be led by the Chairman of the US Supreme Court. In this case the House of Representatives actually acts as a party to the prosecution, and senators play the role of a jury.
The current row in the United States flared up over Trump’s telephone conversation with his Ukrainian counterpart, Vladimir Zelensky. The Democratic Party-controlled House of Representatives launched an impeachment procedure against the US leader. The Democrats argue that Trump tried to persuade Zelensky to investigate the activities of former US Vice-President Joseph Biden and his son in Ukraine in exchange for financial and military assistance to Kiev.
Biden is one of Trump’s most likely rivals in the presidential election due in November 2020. The Democrats claim that the incumbent president exerted pressure on Zelensky with the aim of making Kiev’s support in efforts to discredit Biden, thus improving his chances of being re-elected for a second term. Zelensky said Trump had never exerted pressure on him.
Trump has become the fourth US head of state to face the impeachment procedure, after Andrew Johnson (1868), Richard Nixon (1974) and Bill Clinton (1998-1999). Johnson and Clinton were acquitted; Nixon stepped down before the start of the hearings.