The Heat: US President Trump Impeached

For only the third time in American history, a president of the United States has been impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives. The partisan vote, with no Republicans voting to impeach President Trump, now sets up a trial in the U.S. Senate that will determine if he can remain in office. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi made the case on Wednesday, calling the president’s actions reckless.

But Republicans in Congress have denounced the Democrats impeachment action saying there was no merit to the two charges —abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

To discuss all of this: Leonard Steinhorn is a political analyst and professor of Communication and History at American University. Nate Lerner heads “Build the Wave,” a progressive grassroots political organization. Frank Buckley is Foundation Professor at George Mason University’s Scalia School of Law. Mary C. Curtis is a columnist for Roll Call and an NPR contributor.

POLITICAL WRAP: Voter ID; Pelosi Delay; Charlotte Homicides

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – It appears North Carolina voters will not have to show ID in March’s presidential primary. A Federal Court temporarily blocked new requirements set to go into effect next year. The decision can be appealed but that would be up to Democrat state Attorney General Josh Stein.

U.S. Senators return to Washington at the end of the week. But the question remains, how longer will Nancy Pelosi wait to deliver the articles of impeachment? Senate leaders remain at an impasse over whether there will be new witnesses and testimony in a Senate trial.

Closer to home, this year’s homicide rate in Charlotte is on track to be the worst since 1993. CMPD has investigated 108 murders so far. Mayor Vi Lyles says Charlotte is looking at data from other cities for ways to curb the violence.

POLITICAL WRAP: Impeachment Process On Hold For Holiday Break, McCrory Eyeing Senate Run

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The impeachment process for President Trump is on hold for at least now during the holiday break.  But, staff for the key house committees are expected to work over the holiday recess and could be prepping for a trial as early as the week of January 6th.

Former Governor Pat McCrory announced Thursday he won’t be running for his old job.  But, he says he will consider a U.S. Senate bid for 2022.

WCCB Charlotte Political Contributor Mary C. Curtis weighs in on those stories and more during this week’s Political Wrap.

POLITICAL WRAP: Impeachment Trial; Voter Rights; UK Election

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – After this week’s impeachment vote, debate will continue over a possible Senate trial. Majority leader Mitch McConnell says he’d like it to go quickly. But President Trump has talked about calling witnesses, ranging from Hunter Biden, to the whistleblower, to Congressman Adam Schiff.

Also, this week voting rights are back in the spotlight after a ruling by a circuit court judge in Wisconsin. 234,000 voters, flagged as having possibly moved, will be taken off the registry. The ruling is expected to hurt Democrats in a state President Trump won in 2016.

And in the UK, a landslide victory for Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the Conservative Party. Johnson is promising to “Get Brexit Done,” while President Trump calls the election result a possible “harbinger of what’s to come” in the 202o U.S. election.

Mary C. Curtis: Articles of Impeachment Debate

CHARLOTTE, NC  — Now that house democrats have laid out impeachment charges against President Donald Trump– the debate officially begins.

Political contributor Mary C. Curtis discusses what’s next in the process.

Americans as ‘High Noon’ heroes against lawlessness? Nope

OPINION — Americans like to imagine themselves as Gary Cooper’s Marshal Will Kane in “High Noon,” facing impossible odds, struggling, yet managing to stand up, even if it means standing alone and risking it all. We are all rugged individuals, we think, rushing in while cowards run for cover.

Think again.

As we’ve seen in the reactions to the impeachment inquiry launched by the House into the actions of President Donald Trump, that high self-regard is just another American myth disproved by historical reality.

Long arc of history guides John Lewis in his call for impeachment inquiry

OPINION — No one can accuse Rep. John Lewis of lacking patience. The Georgia Democrat showed plenty, as well as steely resolve, as he changed millions of minds — and history — over a life spent working for equal rights for all. So when he speaks, especially about justice, a cause from which he has never wavered, all would do well to listen.

Lewis was not the only voice raised this week, as all sides raced to place a political frame on the narrative of the undisputed fact that a U.S. president asked a foreign leader to work with him and for him to smear a political opponent, perhaps with military aid in the balance. “I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it,” President Donald Trump said, according to a transcript of the conversation based on notes. He also wanted to rope in his personal lawyer and the attorney general, who, by the way, works for the American people, not Trump.

No direct quid pro quo but plenty of bread crumbs leading to the conclusion that a country dependent on funds to deal with, among other things, an extremely aggressive Russian neighbor, better pay attention.

Why politicians, and everyone, need to think about legacy

OPINION — At least the bill was approved on a voice vote. That was the bill that would make lynching a federal crime, passed in the Senate late last week — in 2019.

Let that sink in. The legislation still must be approved by the Democrat-controlled House, which is expected to happen with no problem, and be signed into law by President Donald Trump. But it would be unwise to take anything for granted since similar legislation has stalled for more than 100 years, held up by elected public servants who felt that taking a stand would be too politically risky.

A Kamala Harris candidacy is a test, and not just for the candidate

OPINION — Of course, a reporter asked Kamala Harris how she would describe her identity. The California senator, a new entry into a crowded and growing Democratic field to challenge Donald Trump next year, answered simply, “I describe myself as a proud American.”

It’s a question no other candidate has been asked, and one that Harris will no doubt be asked again before the long slog to November 2020 is completed.

It’s not just her competitors Harris will be confronting in the months until then (or until her campaign comes to an end). It’s also questions like that one, understandable in the coverage of her historic quest. But it’s the extra scrutiny that can be exhausting for anyone just trying to live as herself or himself while being seen as an “other” by so many.

Doug Jones Defeats Roy Moore in Alabama

CHARLOTTE, NC — In deep-red Alabama, Democrat Doug Jones pulled off an upset win over Republican Roy Moore to fill a U.S. Senate seat. With the national and international spotlight on the state, Alabama voted to break with its recent tradition – and go against the candidate heartily endorsed by President Trump in a state he handily won. (Mary C. Curtis)

Political Contributor, Mary C. Curtis weighs in on what happened and what this means.