What is impeachment? ULM panelists speak to community about impeachment process


MONROE, LA (11/20/19)—As the impeachment inquiry carries on in Washington, political science professors want the community to understand the process and what it could mean for our country.

Impeachment is a hot topic at the nation’s capital, many have expressed their opinions on whether President Donald Trump is guilty or innocent.

“I’m not sure how it’s going to progress. We know that if it progresses to the Senate, he is very unlikely to be removed from office,” said Jessica Schofield, Assistant Political Science Professor at ULM.

Some political analysts worry that locals don’t actually know what impeachment means. That’s why a panel discussion, open to the community, was held at ULM.

“Primarily, to give people enough information so they feel confident and they understand it and they can form their own conclusion,” said Schofield.

While two presidents have been impeached, neither were removed from office. However, a common misconception is that impeachment means being removed from office… It does not.

“They completely equate impeachment with removal of office and it’s not that at all. Impeachment just means that you’ve been accused officially of some sort of misdeed,” said Schofield.

The house is in charge of filing articles of impeachment.

“If they decide to vote, it will take half of the members present. A 50 percent majority,” said Schofield.

If the articles of impeachment are passed, it will go to the Senate for an actual trial. Currently, The Senate is run by republicans. One student believes the house will be hard-pressed to get a majority vote.

“It kind of helped unveil the whole process to me that it’s probably going to be along party lines. Nothings going to really come of it that’s too significant,” said Blaine Warren, Political Science Student.

Though some say this process can be long and confusing, understanding impeachment and what it means is important.

“People in our age group tend to kind of support one party over the other. Which is interesting because it’s the prosecuting party in the impeachment inquiry, so it’s important to know what you’re supporting,” said Warren.

The panelist added that President Trump’s case is very different from impeachment cases in the past. In addition, they said the constitution doesn’t give exact laws on what to do, leaving it up to the house and senate.

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