Pelosi Names Impeachment Prosecutors, Triggering Senate Trial 1

The team of House Democratic lawmakers who will act as prosecutors in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump was formally introduced by Speaker Nancy Pelosi in an announcement on Wednesday morning.

The speaker named seven so-called “impeachment managers” who will take up the case, outlined in the two articles of impeachment that the House passed in December, that Trump abused his power by pressuring the government of Ukraine to do him political favors while withholding U.S. security aid.

As expected, the group of managers will be led by the two House lawmakers most closely associated with impeachment: Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the House Intelligence Committee chairman who was the face of the impeachment inquiry, and Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), the House Judiciary Committee chairman whose panel wrote the articles.

The rest of the roster includes a mix of veteran and up-and-coming legislators, the result of a cautious process on Pelosi’s part to ensure the group reflected the diversity of the Democratic caucus. 

Named as managers were several Judiciary Committee members, including Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), a senior member of Democratic leadership, and Rep. Val Demings (D-FL), who also serves on Schiff’s Intelligence Committee. 

Another Judiciary member named to the team, Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), brings a background on impeachment that no other manager will: She sat on the Judiciary Committee during the impeachment of President Bill Clinton in 1998, and in 1973 she was a congressional staffer who helped draft articles of impeachment against President Richard Nixon. 

In addition, Democrats’ big class of freshmen lawmakers will be represented on the team, including Rep. Sylvia Garcia (D-TX), a Judiciary member, and Rep. Jason Crow (D-CO), who in September co-wrote with colleagues a consequential Washington Post op-ed calling for an impeachment inquiry. 

Introducing the managers at a press conference, Pelosi offered a basis for her decision-making in putting together the House team.

“The emphasis is on litigators,” she said. “The emphasis is on comfort levels in the courtroom.” Six of the seven managers are attorneys. 

Pelosi’s announcement sets up the formal conclusion of the full House’s role in the impeachment process later Wednesday, when the chamber will vote on the resolution naming the managers and sending the articles to the Senate. When it passes, the seven managers will walk in a formal procession from the House side of the U.S. Capitol to the Senate side to manually transmit the articles, per tradition.