Like many Americans, Julia has no idea what’s going on with all this impeachment stuff! A member of the Jack of All Trades team, Julia Kostopoulos is a pretty normal college student. She’s an exceptional photographer and social media expert, just a little confused with the whole impeachment issue. This is Julia’s insight into what she knows, and what she thinks as she learns:
“I woke up on Halloween more scared than usual. Why, because there’s snow on the ground. But then again, this is Wisconsin, so I shouldn’t be surprised. I walked into class and saw one of my other group members watching a very boring looking show on his phone. Turns out, it was impeachment? I heard about impeachment before, but had literally no idea what it was. I thought maybe we were getting a new president? When I think of impeachment I think of the President getting kicked out. I don’t understand who gets to decide that either. I thought the people voted on if the President was impeached, but I never voted. I didn’t hear of any election either. Turns out there’s an investigation and something with Ukraine. I didn’t know there was anything going on with Ukraine, I just thought the President hated Russia, does he hate Russia?”
Government can be messy and confusing, especially for those who aren’t always up to date. There’s a lot to know. Whether you love or hate politics, you’ve probably heard the word impeachment thrown around a bit recently. Is it happening, is it not? As stated before, this is just a summary; roughly summarizing what has happened, and what may come.
What’s happened already?
Ukraine: President Trump made a call to the President of Ukraine, and asked for a “favor.” This favor was to investigate Democratic candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden – and his son Hunter Biden – son for his business dealings in Ukraine. This raised alarms as it involved a foreign government in our politics.
Julia: *rolls eyes*: So Trump picked up the phone and was like, “yo buddy?” Why do we care about Joe Biden? What did he ever do to Trump, and I thought Joe Biden was dead?
Impeachment Inquiry: An investigation was started to see if there was any wrongdoing on the president’s part, and what exactly he did.
Julia: How was it released to the public? The investigation was started, and can I watch it… ‘cause I would like to watch it.
Impeachment Rules: On October 31, the House of Representatives voted on the rules for an impeachment inquiry. This means that the process will move forward and set the rules for open hearings – which begin today. This vote needed more than 50% to pass.
Julia: What a fun Halloween! Did they do a little trick or treat action after?
Open Hearings: Beginning today, witnesses will testify in front of the House of Representatives, giving information to the house members and to the public.
Julia: Open? So I can go? Can I ask questions?
House Vote: The House of Representatives will vote on the formal allegations, what they find the President did that was wrong. This must pass by more than 50% voting in favor. At this point the President is impeached, but not removed.
Julia: Woahhhh. That’s it? And he’s just gone now?
Senate Trial: The Senate holds a trial, similar to an interview where they can ask the President questions. They hear all information and arguments on both sides. After the trial, the Senate will vote on the impeachment. If two thirds majority vote to find him guilty, the President would then be removed from office.
Julia: Ahhhh… Okay, now he’s gone? Why does the house get to go first? How long do they ask questions; is there like a time limit for this? What about a question limit, because this could go on forever? Is this like a 9-5 thing?
So that’s it. That’s what you need to know about the impeachment process. There’s a lot happening, and a lot left to come beginning today.
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