Green says House shouldn't hold impeachment articles indefinitely

Green says House shouldn't hold impeachment articles indefinitely

During a press conference at his office in Houston, Green didn't predict a time frame for when the House might send the articles of impeachment over to the Senate but backed Democratic leaders' calls for a "fair" trial that allows for calling witnesses and presenting evidence.

"I want to say clearly that we do have to send the articles of impeachment to the Senate. Currently the Senate is on trial itself because people are watching to see whether there will be a fair trial or a fake trial," Green said.

But he argued that Democrats should at a minimum make demands for how an impeachment trial would be conducted, even if Senate Republicans press forward without reaching any compromise with Democrats.

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"We cannot allow the trial to go forward without at least demanding a fair trial," Green said. "If the Senate chooses to go forward with a fake trial, then there will be another trial in November. This is the trial that takes place in the court of public opinion where the people of this country, the citizens, will vote. And they will make a determination as to whether or not the Senate behaved appropriately."

Key House committee chairs on Sunday indicated that Pelosi's hold on the articles of impeachment accusing Trump of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress over his dealings with Ukraine would not be indefinite.

"All I know at this point is that the Speaker has said, tell us what the rules are and we'll be happy to transmit. We're not withholding simply because we have them under our control. We just want to know what the rules of the game are," House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersGearing up for a chaotic year on K Street Maxine Waters: Republicans 'shielding' Trump 'going to be responsible for dragging us to war' Green says House shouldn't hold impeachment articles indefinitely MORE (D-Calif.), who like Green has long advocated for Trump's impeachment, said on MSNBC's "Kasie DC."

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffOvernight Defense: GAO finds administration broke law by withholding Ukraine aid | Senate opens Trump trial | Pentagon to resume training Saudi students soon Schiff schedules public hearing with US intel chief  Harris calls for Parnas to testify at Senate trial MORE (D-Calif.) argued that the hold on the two articles of impeachment has served to put pressure on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellPoll shows Collins displaces McConnell as most unpopular senator Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti on impeachment: 'CNN can see through this nonsense' Trump says impeachment trial should move 'very quickly' MORE (R-Ky.) over his public coordination with the White House, even though Republicans have refused to budge on Democrats' demands over the last few weeks.

"One success that this has already had is flushing out McConnell. Showing that he is working in cahoots with the president, that he has made himself an active participant in the president's cover-up. So, the American people needed to see that and now they do," Schiff said on CNN's "State of the Union."

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Some liberal Democrats in recent weeks have expressed openness to holding on to the articles of impeachment indefinitely, thereby preventing Trump from securing a swift acquittal by Senate Republicans.

Rep. Lloyd DoggettLloyd Alton DoggettGreen says House shouldn't hold impeachment articles indefinitely Appeals court strikes ObamaCare mandate, sends case back to lower court House passes sweeping Pelosi bill to lower drug prices MORE (D-Texas) said on "CNN Newsroom" late last week that he would back Pelosi if she refused to send over the articles at all if Senate Republicans won't agree to calling witnesses.

"I would certainly support her in doing that," Doggett said. "So I think she could rightly say, we have done our job under the Constitution, the ultimate jurors will be the American people. They should consider what we've done."

"I would be happiest with a fair and impartial trial in accordance with the Constitution and the oath that these senators take. That's my strong first preference. But short of that, I don't think it helps to send over the articles if they're not going to get fair and full consideration," Doggett added.

Green also appeared to try to clarify comments he made on MSNBC last week in which he told host Chris Hayes that "the genesis of impeachment, to be very candid with you, was when the president was running for office" in response to attacks from Republicans who argue that Democrats have wanted to impeach Trump from the start.

Republicans quickly seized on Green's comments, with former House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey GowdyHarold (Trey) Watson GowdyGreen says House shouldn't hold impeachment articles indefinitely Trump golfs with Graham ahead of impeachment trial Trey Gowdy returns to Fox News as contributor MORE (R-S.C.) telling Fox News that "we should buy him time during the Super Bowl so he just keeps talking."

Green at his Monday press conference played clips of GOP Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamDemocratic group plans mobile billboard targeting Collins on impeachment Paul predicts no Republicans will vote to convict Trump Roberts sworn in to preside over Trump impeachment trial MORE (S.C.), Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzSeven things to know about the Trump trial All the frontrunners could survive initial Iowa test Republicans face internal brawl over impeachment witnesses MORE (Texas) and Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyCollins says she's 'likely' to support calling witnesses for impeachment trial Paul predicts no Republicans will vote to convict Trump Senate approves Trump trade deal with Canada, Mexico MORE (Utah) blasting Trump during the 2016 campaign and calling the then-candidate "crazy," a "pathological liar" and a "con man," respectively. 

Green said that the impeachment push began to take root during the 2016 campaign because of Trump's actions. 

"The president's behavior has not changed. His recidivism simply continues. He is a chronic habitual recidivist and that is why people don't trust him. This is also why this was the genesis of why people started to think that there should be some sort of impeachment," Green said, adding that "everything that we've sought to do to impeach the president occurred after the election."

Green previously forced three House floor votes in 2017, 2018 and 2019 on articles of impeachment against Trump that primarily accused Trump of inflaming racial tensions. All three efforts were unsuccessful.

Green's articles of impeachment in July came after Trump attacked freshman Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezAyanna Pressley's 'squad' of congresswomen offers support after she opens up about alopecia Here are the 10 senators who voted against Trump's North American trade deal Artist paints Michelle Obama, other women as battered in campaign against domestic violence MORE (D-N.Y.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibAyanna Pressley's 'squad' of congresswomen offers support after she opens up about alopecia With surge in anti-Semitism, political leaders need to be aggressive and reflective in response Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chair endorses Sanders MORE (D-Mich.), Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarAyanna Pressley's 'squad' of congresswomen offers support after she opens up about alopecia With surge in anti-Semitism, political leaders need to be aggressive and reflective in response Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chair endorses Sanders MORE (D-Minn.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyAyanna Pressley's 'squad' of congresswomen offers support after she opens up about alopecia Ayanna Pressley opens up about having alopecia for first time, reveals bald head in interview Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chair endorses Sanders MORE (D-Mass.) and urged them to "go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came."
 
All four Democrats are U.S. citizens, and three were born in the United States.

The other articles of impeachment previously presented by Green cited, among other controversies, Trump calling Haiti, El Salvador and some African nations "shithole countries," deriding African American football players for kneeling during the national anthem to protest police brutality and offering an equivocating response to the deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017.