After Bill Clinton was impeached by the House on Dec. 19, 1998, his trial in the Senate began 19 days later. Andrew Johnson’s Senate trial started 10 days after he was impeached in 1868. With President Trump, the gap will be longer—possibly a lot longer. In what Politico calls a “stunning coda” to the impeachment process, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters Wednesday night that Democrats could delay sending the articles of impeachment to the Senate because of concerns about how fair the trial will be. Following the House’s Wednesday vote to impeach Trump, another House resolution needs to be passed naming impeachment managers to present the case before the articles are sent to the Senate.
“We cannot name managers until we see what the process is on the Senate side,” Pelosi said. “So far we haven’t seen anything that looks fair to us. So hopefully it will be fair. And when we see what that is, we’ll send our managers.” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has predicted a short trial and a Trump acquittal and has boasted of coordinating the trial with the White House, notes Politico. The House is expected to go on recess from Thursday until Jan. 7. Pelosi declined to answer questions on whether she was considering placing an indefinite hold on the articles, denying Trump his expected acquittal and possibly delaying the trial until after the next election, reports the Washington Post.