US House of Representatives votes to impeach Trump
In January Trump will face a Senate trial
The US House of Representatives has voted to impeach president Donald Trump in a landmark move that makes him the third president to be charged with major infringements.
Following a three-month investigation and eight hours of intense debate, the majority of the representatives decided that Trump is guilty of both abuse of power (adopted by 230 to 197) and obstruction of Congress (adopted by 229 to 198).
In January 2020, the impeachment voting will pass to the Senate, where Trump has a majority, with 53 seats occupied by Republicans and 45 by the Democrats.
While the historical impeachment debates were underway in the House, Trump was holding a campaign rally in Michigan. The President responded to the vote immediately, stating that the "lawless" impeachment was nothing but a "political suicide" for the Democrat Party.
The charges against Trump relate to two major political cases. The first is linked with alleged abuse of power during the talks with the Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky. The Democrats allege that the US President forced Zelensky into launching investigations against Trump’s domestic political opponents.
Another charge, the obstruction of Congress, states that Trump urged the top-level staffers at the White House not to testify against him in impeachment investigations. Dozens of current and former national security officials and diplomats ignored Trump's directives and gave their testimonies.
Trump is only the third president in US history to face impeachment procedures. Andrew Johnson, who took office from 1865 to 1869, was the first His case went to the Senate, but the majority of the senators rejected his impeachment. The second was Bill Clinton, the 42nd president of the US from 1993 to 2001. The House of Representatives also voted to impeach him, but the Senate decided that Clinton was not guilty of the accusations.
The market analysts have not yet come to a conclusion on how Trump's possible impeachment could affect the markets. While some insist that such a procedure is normally followed by a general decline in the stock markets, others claim that without protectionist measures and ineffective tariffs the US economy will breathe a sigh of relief.
FURTHER READING: Trump impeachment: How would it impact the markets?