Pelosi sets Wednesday votes to send impeachment to Senate (copy)

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., arrives to meet with the Democratic Caucus at the Capitol in Washington Tuesday. Pelosi, who has not yet relayed the articles of impeachment to the Senate for the trial of President Donald Trump.  Trump was impeached by the Democratic-led House last month on charges of abuse of power over pushing Ukraine to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden and obstruction of Congress in the probe.

American democracy will suffer if the Senate does not conduct an impartial impeachment trial. The required impartiality oath nevertheless appears meaningless to those senators, including North Carolina’s Thom Tillis, who have declared in advance their intended verdicts of “not guilty.”

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has also stated that he may exclude witnesses, even though officials prohibited by President Trump from testifying before the House have offered to appear before the Senate.

Believers in the president’s innocence should still want an unbiased trial, so that evidence can disprove the impeachment articles and close the case. If the outcome is predetermined, not only will we never know the truth (whatever we may want to believe), but precedents will be established that threaten the basis of American life.

All of us, if we ever face a trial, should hope for impartial proceedings. Any process that can be rigged in our favor can also be rigged against us. Impartial justice at all levels is the essence of our government. If “justice for all” doesn’t include the president in the requirements it imposes, it may eventually exclude us from the protections it gives.

Readers should demand a full and impartial impeachment trial from their senators.

David Hammond

Greensboro

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