Democrats designed Wednesday’s impeachment debate to last for six hours, but it played out in one
to two-minute bursts as individual lawmakers strode to the microphones to quickly deliver their
conclusions about whether President Donald Trump abused his office and obstructed Congress.

Under the rules adopted by the House, the debate oscillated between Republicans and Democrats, managed by the chairman and ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee Adam Schiff (D–California).

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi chose Rep. Diana DeGette (D–Colorado), a veteran Democrat who had impressed her with a tough, skillful parliamentary hand, to preside over the historic debate on the articles of impeachment.

Here is a flavor of the back and forth:

Rep. Ted Lieu (D–California): “His impeachment is permanent. It will follow him around for the rest of his life and history books will record it. People will know why we impeached. It’s all very simple. It is very simple. No one is above the law.”

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Rep. K. Michael Conaway (R –Texas): “Many of my colleagues diminished what should be a solemn and grave proceeding and made it into a circus.”

Rep. Tom McClintock (R–California): “This is a stunning abuse of power and a shameless travesty of justice that will stain the reputations of those responsible for generations to come.”

Rep. Steve Cohen (D–Tennessee): “Donald Trump used the high power of the presidency to pressure a foreign nation to besmirched his perceived primary political opponent.”

Rep. Clay Higgins (R–Louisiana): “America’s being severely injured by this betrayal, by this unjust and weaponized impeachment, brought upon us by the same socialists who threaten unborn life in the womb, who threaten First Amendment rights of conservatives.”

Rep. Hank Johnson (D–Georgia): “If you think I exaggerate in warning our elections can be undermined, I urge you to come down to Georgia, find a black man or woman of a certain age, and they’ll tell you the danger is real.”

Rep. Chris Stewart (R–Utah): “This day is about one thing and one thing only. They hate this president. They hate those of us who voted for him. They think we are stupid. They think we made a mistake. They think Hillary Clinton should be the president and they want to fix that.”

Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D–New York): “I would remind the gentleman if President Trump is impeached and removed, the new president would be Mike Pence, not Hillary Clinton.”

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