Ask Ms.: Answers to Your Questions About Impeachment

As news of the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump has been breaking, we asked our readers—what do you want to know about impeachment? Ask Ms., and you shall receive.

(Alan Greig / Creative Commons)

If a majority of the House of Representatives votes in favor of one or more article of impeachment against the President, is the Senate then obliged to take it up in a timely manner and vote on it?

Yes. In fact, in an interview on CNBC on Monday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said he would have, “no choice but to take [impeachment] up,” based on Senate rules. However, he continued to say that, “How long you’re on it is a whole different matter,” leading folks to speculate that McConnell would simply rush the trial in the Republican-controlled Senate.

A 2/3 majority vote in the Senate is needed to remove the President from office. While most pundits speculate that reaching 2/3 is not likely, shifting public opinion and ongoing revelations of increasingly serious allegations involving not just the President, but also Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General William Barr, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other administration officials, could change McConnell’s calculations.

If President Trump is impeached and then removed from office, can he run again in 2020?

Long story short: yes. And he currently is running for re-election. Trump filed his reelection papers just hours after his inauguration on January 20, 2017 (that’s right, the same day). He officially launched his re-election campaign at a rally in Orlando, Fla. in June of this year.

What happens to anyone else implicated via the questioning that occurs during the impeachment hearings? Can they get in trouble if they’re implicated in a crime?

Others can be implicated and punished for crimes that are discovered during the impeachment process. Just look at the “Watergate Seven”—seven of former President Richard Nixon’s aides who were indicted in the scandal that ended his presidency, and received varying prison sentences and fines for their crimes—including Nixon’s Attorney General John Mitchell, who served time in prison.

Many thanks to our rebelling and truth-telling followers who submitted these questions! Is there something else you’re curious about? Let us know on social media using #AskMs and we’ll do our best to answer your questions in the next round of Ask Ms.: Impeachment Edition.

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Maddy Pontz is a passionate feminist and storyteller. She’s currently a freelance writer and frequent Ms. contributor, and was previously the community engagement editor at Ms. You can find her on Twitter @MaddyPontz.