Nancy Pelosi authorises drafting of impeachment articles against Trump

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has announced that the House of Representatives is moving forward to draft articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump.

"Our democracy is what is at stake," Ms Pelosi said. "The president leaves us no choice but to act."

Ms Pelosi delivered the historic announcement as Democrats push toward a vote, possibly by Christmas.

She said she was authorising the drafting of articles of impeachment "sadly but with confidence and humility".

"The president's actions have seriously violated the Constitution," Ms Pelosi said.

At the heart of the impeachment probe is a July call with the president of Ukraine, in which Mr Trump pressed the leader to investigate Democrats as Mr Trump was withholding aid to the country.

In her solemn announcement, Ms Pelosi added: "The president leaves us no choice but to act because he is trying to corrupt, once again, the election for his own benefit.

"The president has engaged in abuse of power, undermining our national security and jeopardising the integrity of our elections."

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NATO leaders gather for summit
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NATO leaders gather for summit
Photo by: KGC-512/STAR MAX/IPx 2019 12/3/19 The Queen, accompanied by other Members of the Royal Family, hosts a reception for NATO leaders, spouses or partners, and delegations, at Buckingham Palace in London, England. Here, Queen Elizabeth, Melania Trump, Donald Trump, Prince Charles, Camilla
Photo by: KGC-512/STAR MAX/IPx 2019 12/3/19 The Queen, accompanied by other Members of the Royal Family, hosts a reception for NATO leaders, spouses or partners, and delegations, at Buckingham Palace, London, UK, on the 3rd December 2019.
Photo by: KGC-512/STAR MAX/IPx 2019 12/3/19 The Queen, accompanied by other Members of the Royal Family, hosts a reception for NATO leaders, spouses or partners, and delegations, at Buckingham Palace in London, England. Here, Queen Elizabeth, Melania Trump
Photo by: KGC-512/STAR MAX/IPx 2019 12/3/19 The Queen, accompanied by other Members of the Royal Family, hosts a reception for NATO leaders, spouses or partners, and delegations, at Buckingham Palace in London, England. Here, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge
US President Donald Trump (front) with Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab (centre left) snd Prime Minister Boris Johnson(centre right) during the annual Nato heads of government summit at The Grove hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire.
US President Donald Trump (right) and German chancellor Angela Merkel (left) during the annual Nato heads of government summit at The Grove hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire.
US President Donald Trump (front) with Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab (centre left) snd Prime Minister Boris Johnson(centre right) during the annual Nato heads of government summit at The Grove hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire.
Jens Stoltenberg, the Secretary General of Nato (left) sits with Prime Minister Boris Johnson during the annual Nato heads of government summit at The Grove hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire.
Drummers from the band of the Royal Marines play for the leaders during the annual Nato heads of government summit at The Grove hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire.
(left to right) Secretary General of Nato Jens Stoltenberg, US President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Boris Johnson during the annual Nato heads of government summit at The Grove hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire.
Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau arrives for the annual Nato heads of government summit at The Grove hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire. PA Photo. Picture date: Wednesday December 4, 2019. See PA story POLITICS Nato. Photo credit should read: Chris J Ratcliffe/PA Wire
Prime Minister Boris Johnson arrives for the annual Nato heads of government summit at The Grove hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire.
An activist stands next to a poster opposing extradition of Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange during the demonstration. President Trump arrived in the UK on a three-day visit last night, chiefly to attend the NATO summit in Watford. Activists protest against Trump�s visit in Trafalgar Square. (Photo by David Cliff / SOPA Images/Sipa USA)
An activist holds a placard opposing any post-Brexit US market access to Britain's National Health Service (NHS) during the demonstration. President Trump arrived in the UK on a three-day visit last night, chiefly to attend the NATO summit in Watford. Activists protest against Trump�s visit in Trafalgar Square. (Photo by David Cliff / SOPA Images/Sipa USA)
Thousands of protesters marched to Buckingham Palace in London in 'No to Trump' demonstration�during an official diner at Buckingham Palace on first day of 70th NATO summit in London, England on December 3, 2019. The protesters�demanded, among others, a stop in engagement in conflicts in Middle East and Latin America. (Photo by Michal Busko/Sipa USA)
French President, Emmanuel Macron attends a meeting at 10 Downing Street during the NATO Summit. (Photo by James Warren / SOPA Images/Sipa USA)
Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan attends a meeting at 10 Downing Street during the NATO Summit. (Photo by James Warren / SOPA Images/Sipa USA)
Queen Elizabeth II and Prime Minister Boris Johnson joins other Nato leaders for a group photograph Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel, talks to Queen Elizabeth II during a reception at Buckingham Palace, London, as they gathered to mark 70 years of the alliance.
Queen Elizabeth II with US President Donald Trump during a reception at Buckingham Palace, London, as Nato leaders attend to mark 70 years of the alliance.
Queen Elizabeth II with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during the reception in Buckingham Palace, London, as Nato leaders gather to mark 70 years of the alliance.
Queen Elizabeth II with Melania Trump during the reception in Buckingham Palace, London, as Nato leaders gather to mark 70 years of the alliance.
Queen Elizabeth II holds a private audience with Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in Buckingham Palace, London. PA Photo. Picture date: Tuesday December 3, 2019. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
US President Donald Trump and his wife Melania, arrive at Stansted Airport, London, ahead of the NATO summit, on the first day of his visit to the United Kingdom.
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