01 Nov 2019
US House approves process to impeach Donald Trump
The US House of Representatives on Thursday voted to approve the process of President Donald Trump's impeachment.
In the first step of support for the President's impeachment, the Democratic-led House voted 232 to 196 to now hold public hearings in an inquiry into Trump's attempt to involve Ukraine to investigate Democratic political rival Joe Biden.
Here are more details.
Democrats, Republicans divided over Thursday vote
On Thursday, Democrats near-unanimously voted in favor of public hearings in Congress for Trump's impeachment process. All Republicans voted against the move.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said before the vote, "It's a sad day. No one comes to Congress to impeach a president."
Trump stands accused of jeopardizing national security for political gains ahead of the 2020 US Presidential elections.
Why are Democrats calling to impeach Trump?
The investigation focuses on a telephonic conversation between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelenskiy held on July 25.
In the conversation, the US President asked Zelenskiy to investigate his rival Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
Former Vice President Biden is a Presidential candidate in the 2020 polls. His son has served as a director for Ukrainian energy company Burisma.
Greatest witch hunt in American history: Trump
Since Thursday's update, Trump has called out the move in a series of tweets. He tweeted, "The Impeachment Hoax is hurting our Stock Market. The Do-Nothing Democrats don't care!"
He also called his impeachment the "greatest witch hunt in American history."
Further, Trump has denied any wrongdoing on his part concerning the July 25 phone call and Republicans have largely supported him.
Andrew Johnson, Bill Clinton were impeached by House of Representatives
In the past, US Presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton have been impeached by the House of Representatives.
However, neither President was convicted by the Senate as per process. Hence, an impeachment process has never resulted in the removal of a President from office.
Notably, in the Senate, Trump's Republican Party holds 53 to 47 majority against the Democrats.