Impeachment briefing: What you need to know as House sets vote to send issue to Senate trial

The House of Representatives is expected to send its impeachment articles on President Trump to the Senate, where a trial may be held.It would be only the third impeachment trial in U.S. history, and ratchets up already-divisive election-year rhetoric.The president has insisted he’s done nothing wrong – and says the Republican-controlled Senate should simply dismiss the case.But Trump’s lawyers are now scrambling to assemble a team and draft statements.In the end, many expect a repeat of the Bill Clinton impeachment – a highly partisan event that fails to remove the president from office. Republicans control the Senate, 53-47.

The U.S. House is set to vote Wednesday to send the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump to the Senate for a landmark trial on whether charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress are grounds for removal.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the next steps after meeting privately with House Democrats at the Capitol, ending her blockade Tuesday a month after they voted to impeach Trump.

It will be only the third presidential impeachment trial in American history, a serious moment coming amid the backdrop of a politically divided nation and an election year.

The Senate is expected to transform into an impeachment court as early as Thursday. The Constitution calls for the chief justice to preside over senators, who serve as jurors, to swear an oath to deliver “impartial justice.”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday the chief justice would open the trial this week, but that the significant proceedings would launch next Tuesday.

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 as the president withheld aid from the country, and obstructing Congress’ ensuing probe.

Republicans control the Senate, 53-47, and are all but certain to acquit Trump.