12/05/2019 10:01 EST | Updated 12/05/2019 11:42 EST

Democrats Are Drafting Articles Of Impeachment Against Trump, Pelosi Says

"The president abused his power," the U.S. House speaker claims.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called on House Democratic leaders to begin drafting articles of impeachment against U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday.

“Today, I am asking our chairman to proceed with articles of impeachment,” she said. The statement was billed as a special announcement about the “status” of House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry into Trump. Lawmakers on two congressional committees have held impeachment hearings over the last few weeks.

The timing makes it likely there will be a House vote on the articles before lawmakers adjourn for the holidays later this month and a Senate trial beginning in January 2020.

Pelosi said the testimony proved that “the president’s actions have seriously violated the Constitution.”

“The facts are uncontested: The president abused his power,” she continued. “The president leaves us no choice but to act.” 

Andrew Harrer via Getty Images
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat from California, makes a statement on the impeachment inquiry into U.S. President Donald Trump's dealings with Ukraine on Thursday in Washington, D.C.

After several marathon days of hearings in November, Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee released a detailed report Tuesday. In the report, they laid out “overwhelming” evidence of misconduct by Trump.

Chiefly, they concluded that his July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, pressuring him to investigate 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, represented “stark evidence of misconduct; a demonstration of the President’s prioritization of his personal political benefit over the national interest.” 

On Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee began its own set of impeachment hearings, featuring testimony from constitutional law scholars.

The committee will hold its next hearing Monday, with testimony from the staff counsels from the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation.

On Thursday, White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham responded by claiming that “Pelosi and the Democrats should be ashamed.”

“We look forward to a fair trial in the Senate,” she tweeted following Pelosi’s announcement.

This story has been updated with the next House Judiciary Committee hearing.