Updated at 9:20 a.m. ET
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., announced Thursday morning that House Democrats will move ahead with drafting articles of impeachment against President Trump, though she did not define the scope of those articles.
“His wrongdoing strikes at the very heart of our Constitution,” Pelosi said, referring to Trump’s efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate political rivals while hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid were on hold earlier this year.
She made a statement from the Capitol on Thursday morning to give an update on the impeachment inquiry into President Trump, as Democrats have been deliberating how to proceed.
Members of Pelosi’s caucus met behind closed doors on Wednesday, ahead of the first impeachment hearing in the House Judiciary Committee. That panel is charged with drafting articles of impeachment and heard from constitutional scholars, who gave their assessments of whether President Trump’s efforts to get Ukraine to investigate political rivals met the level of impeachable offenses.
Democrats have disagreed over the scope of eventual articles of impeachment, whether they should be narrowly drafted to focus on the Ukraine scandal or whether they should be broadened out to include findings of former special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election and possible obstruction of that investigation by President Trump.
The White House declined to take part in the House Judiciary hearing, while continuing to complain that Democrats have not provided ample opportunity to defend the president. Senate Republicans met with members of the White House staff on Wednesday to plot strategy for a possible Senate trial that would follow a House vote approving articles of impeachment.
Trump tweeted ahead of Pelosi’s statement. “The Do Nothing Democrats had a historically bad day yesterday in the House. They have no Impeachment case and are demeaning our country,” he wrote in part. The president also urged Democrats to move quickly on impeachment “so that our Country can get back to business.”