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Pelosi says she may hold off on sending articles of impeachment to Senate

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Posted at 11:20 PM, Dec 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-18 23:20:07-05

During a press conference after the final vote, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made what appeared to be an extraordinary and unprecedented power move -- suggesting that she will delay sending the articles of impeachment over to the US Senate because she wants reassurance from Senate Republican leaders that it will be a fair trial.

Signaling that she would withhold the two articles of impeachment approved by House members Wednesday night as leverage over GOP leaders Wednesday night, she said she could not name impeachment managers "until we see what the process is on the Senate side."

"So far we haven't seen anything that looks fair to us, so hopefully it will be fair," she said.

When pressed by reporters on what she meant, Pelosi did not define what a "fair trial" would entail in her view. But, reading from a note card, she said a fair process would not include the Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell working hand in glove with the White House to define the parameters of the trial, as has been reported in the press in recent weeks.

"This is a serious matter even though the Majority Leader in the United States Senate says it's OK for the foreman of the jury to be in cahoots with the lawyers of the accused. That doesn't sound right to us."

It was the angriest she sounded all day.

Wednesday's impeachment vote largely went down party lines. Trump became the third president to be impeached, but no president has even been removed from office.