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H.Res. 744 (116th): Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the Senate should amend its rules to require a sitting United States Senator actively seeking election to the Presidency of the United States to recuse himself or herself from the impeachment trial of an incumbent President of the United States who is serving his or her first term in office.


The text of the resolution below is as of Dec 5, 2019 (Introduced). The resolution was not adopted.

Summary of this resolution

Should Democratic presidential candidates have to withdraw from President Trump’s imminent Senate trial?

Context

After the House impeached President Trump on December 18, the Senate will begin his impeachment trial in January, which could potentially remove him from office. The idea as laid out in the Constitution is that the 100 senators would act impartially as unbiased jurors. (In theory.)

The Constitution anticipated potential conflicts of interest occurring during a Senate trial. The document specifies that the vice president — who is usually supposed to preside over the Senate — is replaced with the Supreme Court’s chief justice during an impeachment trial instead.

Currently, five U.S. senators are active ...


IV

116th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. RES. 744

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

December 5, 2019

(for himself, Mr. David P. Roe of Tennessee, Mr. Waltz, Mr. Guest, Mr. LaMalfa, Mr. Hice of Georgia, Mr. Crenshaw, Mr. Wright, Mr. Smith of Nebraska, Mr. Kevin Hern of Oklahoma, Mr. Riggleman, Mr. Arrington, Mr. Banks, Mr. Walker, Mr. Yoho, Mr. Gosar, Mr. Rogers of Alabama, Mr. Duncan, Mr. Luetkemeyer, Mr. Babin, Mr. DesJarlais, Mr. Mullin, Mr. Crawford, Mr. Long, Mr. Hunter, Mr. Marshall, and Mr. Austin Scott of Georgia) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Rules

RESOLUTION

Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the Senate should amend its rules to require a sitting United States Senator actively seeking election to the Presidency of the United States to recuse himself or herself from the impeachment trial of an incumbent President of the United States who is serving his or her first term in office.

Whereas the House of Representatives has the sole power to impeach the President of the United States;

Whereas the Senate has the sole power to conduct a trial to remove the President from office;

Whereas, during an impeachment trial, the Vice President of the United States does not preside over the Senate in his or her role as President of the Senate due to a clear conflict of interest, but rather the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court presides;

Whereas a sitting United States Senator actively seeking the Presidency of the United States has a vested interest in the reputation and political future of an incumbent President of the United States who is currently serving his or her first term in office;

Whereas Senate rules governing impeachment proceedings requires United States Senators to make the following oath prior to an impeachment trial:

I solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be) that in all things appertaining to the trial of the impeachment of ——— ———, now pending, I will do impartial justice according to the Constitution and laws: So help me God.;

Whereas a sitting United States Senator actively seeking to unseat the incumbent President of the United States cannot claim impartiality in his or her political opponent’s impeachment trial; and

Whereas the Constitution grants both chambers of Congress the authority to determine the Rules of its Proceedings: Now, therefore, be it

That it is the sense of the House of Representatives that the Senate should amend its rules to require a sitting United States Senator actively seeking election to the Presidency of the United States to recuse himself or herself from the impeachment trial of an incumbent President of the United States who is serving his or her first term in office.