Vice Director of House Rules Committee, Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) reportedly helped to write the impeachment rules despite the fact he himself was subject to impeachment and removal from office in the past.
In an explosive House Rules Committee meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 30, Hastings was the one who laid out the alleged “misconduct” leveled at the president.
But Hasting himself was among eight officials that have gone through impeachment proceedings, which finally resulted in a guilty verdict.
It all started in 1981 when Hastings was charged with accepting a $150,000 bribe in exchange for a lenient sentence and a return of seized assets for 21 counts of racketeering by Frank and Thomas Romano, and of perjury in his testimony about the case. In 1983, he was acquitted by a jury after his alleged co-conspirator, William Borders, refused to testify in court, resulting in a jail sentence for Borders, reported Milwaukee Journal.
In 1988, his case was brought to the Democratic-controlled House , where he was impeached for bribery and perjury by a vote of 413-3. The Senate convicted him in October 1989 in a vote on 11 of the 17 articles of impeachment. Hasting was then convicted of eight of the 11 articles, with the first one on conspiracy. The vote on the first article was 69 for and 26 opposed. According to the Senate rules, conviction on any single article was enough to remove the judge from office.
But the Senate did not bar him from running again for office. Consequently, since 1993, he has been representing a Florida district in the U.S. House.
Byron York, Washington Examiner ‘s chief political correspondent took to Twitter to express his confusion about the fact that a congressman of such renown can still seat on the House Rules Committee.
Striking that in House Rules Committee meeting on impeachment inquiry resolution, No. 2 Democrat, Rep. Alcee Hastings, has actually been impeached. (Was federal judge, impeached, convicted, and removed for bribery in 1989.)
— Byron York (@ByronYork) October 30, 2019
The rules set out by the Democrat-led Committee have been blasted strongly by the Republicans.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said that it would deny the “most basic rights of due process” to President Trump and effectively elevates House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) to a “de facto special prosecutor.”
But Hasting argued that the president is not entitled to due process rights during impeachment, which he likened to the grand jury stage of a criminal trial.