Ohio Senators Sherrod Brown, Rob Portman discuss impeachment road ahead

Posted at 6:07 PM, Oct 31, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-31 18:07:39-04

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Should the House of Representatives move forward and formally impeach President Trump, the matter would then move to the U.S. Senate for trial, with the Senators serving as jurors.

Although the country has only been down this road three times before, Ohio's two U.S. Sentors, Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman, have experience with both voting in 1998 on the impeachment of President Bill Clinton. The Republican Portman voting to impeach, the Democrat Brown to not.

Portman will be someone that many will be watching. He's on the record saying he believes there is not enough to impeach and he told News 5 nothing has changed.

"In terms of it being a demand or a quid pro quo and so on, the aid went," Portman said of the money eventually going through. "Look I've said very plainly as you know that it's inappropriate for the president to have spoken to a foreign government about his political opponent, period. I don't approve of that, but the question is, is that an impeachable offense?"

Senator Sherrod Brown said yes.

"When a President of the United States holds up $400 million and tells another country, who is going to get that money to fight the Russians, that you're not going to get that money until you help my campaign, help me personally, that's impeachable, that's breaking a federal law," Browns said. "Richard Nixon didn't even do that kind of stuff."

The ability to impeach, Portman pointed out, is what some people call "the most un-Democratic part of our Constitution; people elect somebody and Congress decides to remove that person from office."

"We have to just think about this, is that the right way to go?" said Portman. "We're already in an election. If the people who want to remove Donald Trump from office want to get engaged in the campaign, great, I'm sure they will and they should — that's our Democratic process."

"So do you want to take this extreme measure of impeachment which is basically saying forget what the people said in the election, we're going to remove a president from office again in the context of us already being in the election, and the money did go, and that was important," Portman said.