‘It’s happening’: Trump is getting impeached, former White House ethics chief says

Zamira Rahim

A former White House ethics lawyer has said people who oppose impeachment hearings probing the Trump presidency do not respect the US constitution.

“It’s happening, [Donald Trump] is getting impeached,” Richard W. Painer said on Twitter.

Donald Trump waves as he exits Marine One: Getty

“Anyone who doesn’t support [Jerry Nadler] and the work of his committee has no respect for the constitution.”

Mr Painer was chief ethics lawyer at the White House from 2005 to 2007, under George W Bush.

The law professor has repeatedly called for Mr Trump to face impeachment proceedings.

Mr Painter made the comments while sharing a clip of Jerry Nadler, the chair of the House Judiciary Committee, quizzing a former White House official.

The Democrats are holding hearings to officially determine whether or not to impeach the president.

Mr Nadler has publicly struck a much more aggressive tone on impeachment than the Democratic leadership.

Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the house, has repeatedly rejected calls from Democrats to launch a formal impeachment attempt.

The first hearing on the issue was held on Tuesday, when the judiciary committee questioned Corey Lewandowski , the president’s former campaign manager.

Mr Lewandowski repeatedly refused to answer questions during the hearing, earning an angry rebuke from the committee chair.

“I think we should call this what it is: an absolute cover-up by the White House,” said Mr Nadler. “Today’s cover-up is part of a pattern of the White House blocking congress.”

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The impeachment process would begin formally if a majority of members in the House voted to support an article of impeachment.

At that point the president would technically be impeached.

Individual politicians, such as Brad Sherman, have filed articles but these have always failed at the voting stage.

If Mr Trump were impeached the issue would then move to the senate, which would conduct a trial presided over by the Supreme Court‘s chief justice.

If two-thirds of senators find the president guilty, he is removed and the vice president becomes president.

The senate is currently controlled by a majority of Republicans, who support Mr Trump.

No president has ever been successfully removed from office through the impeachment process.