Pelosi Might Have Just Screwed Her Own Party By Bungling Impeachment
James Wallner, a lecturer on government at American University who writes about parliamentary procedure, told InsideSources that how long impeachment will take depends on how long it takes the Senate to get the articles of impeachment from the House.
“If [the process] becomes controversial, it will take longer,” he said. “The more you have to satisfy senators that an adequate process has occurred, the longer it takes.”
Senate Republicans will probably want to get it all over with as quickly as possible, Wallner said. At the same time, it would be politically damaging for Democrats if Republicans can stretch the process as long as possible.
“Most people agree that politically [impeachment is] probably not a great thing for the Democratic Party, so that suggests you’re not going to see Democrats try to drag it out,” Wallner said. “I mean, it may interfere with the primaries.”
In an op-ed for The Washington Examiner, Wallner also said the Senate “shouldn’t cut an impeachment trial short,” even though Trump will likely be acquitted (a guilty verdict requires a two-thirds majority), because it will reflect badly on Republicans.
“Even in a world where the rules have lost all meaning, Republicans should nevertheless refrain from moving to dismiss an impeachment trial before a verdict can be rendered,” he said. “If … Republicans move to dismiss the trial immediately after it has begun, they will have denied senators the opportunity to acquit the president. The result will be a lingering cloud of suspicion that will hang over the president and Senate Republicans.”