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Donald Trump impeachment inquiry: What you need to know

Trump says the impeachment inquiry will only strengthen his chances of re-election. REUTERS

Donald Trump impeachment inquiry: What you need to know

All you need to know after US Democrats launched an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.

Donald Trump impeachment inquiry: What you need to know

US President Donald Trump faces an impeachment inquiry from the Democrats after a whistleblower’s complaints about Trump’s interactions with Ukraine.

Top Democrat Nancy Pelosi said the President “must be held accountable” following growing demands from her party.

The allegations centre around claims that Trump asked Ukraine to launch an investigation into his 2020 presidential rival Joe Biden.

What’s happening?

Trump faces an impeachment inquiry from the rival Democrat party over allegations he acted under the radar in seeking political help from Ukraine.

Last week, US intelligence officers filed an “urgent” complaint to a government watchdog about Trump’s interactions with a foreign leader, which turned out to be Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky.

In announcing the impeachment inquiry, top Democrat Nancy Pelosi says Trump's actions were a violation of the law. REUTERS

In announcing the impeachment inquiry, top Democrat Nancy Pelosi says Trump’s actions were a violation of the law. REUTERS

What was said between the pair is unclear.

However, Democrats claim that Trump threatened to withhold military aid in order to force Ukraine to investigate corruption allegations into Biden.

Trump denies the claims.

Biden is the front-runner to take on Trump in next year’s Presidential election.

Democrats not backing down

However, Pelosi is adamant that Trump committed “a violation of the law”, describing his actions “a breach of his constitutional responsibilities”.

“This week the president has admitted to asking the president of Ukraine to take action that would benefit him politically,” she said, announcing her party’s intention to launch an impeachment inquiry.

How has Trump responded?

Trump has not only denied claims of corruption but turned them to this political advantage.

The Republicans have said the Democrats’ moves will merely increase Trump’s chances of being re-elected next year.

Trump’s campaign manager Brad Parscale said, “The misguided Democrat impeachment strategy is meant to appease their rabid, extreme, leftist base, but will only serve to embolden and energize President Trump’s supporters and create a landslide victory for the President.”

In a series of tweets, Trump described the move for impeachment as “a witch-hunt”.

“If she [Nancy Pelosi] does that, they all say that’s a positive for me from the election,” he added.

Trump has also promised to release a transcript of his conversations with Ukraine’s president to illustrate it was “totally appropriate”.

Will Trump be impeached?

There is strong support among Democrats for impeachment – more than 145 out of 235 members are in favour.

However, an impeachment motion is unlikely to pass the Republican-controlled Senate.

Furthermore, opinion polls show impeachment would be unpopular among US voters.

No US President has ever been removed by impeachment.

Bill Clinton and Andrew Johnson were impeached but then acquitted by the Senate.

Richard Nixon stepped down before he could be removed by impeachment.

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