What to know about the House impeachment managers

By Grace Segers

/ CBS News

Pelosi announces impeachment managers

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced on Wednesday the seven members of Congress who will serve as impeachment managers in the Senate trial of President Trump, and who will be responsible for prosecuting the case against him.

There are already obvious differences in the makeup of the managers who prosecuted the last impeachment trial in 1999, that of President Bill Clinton. Then, there were 13 impeachment managers, all of whom were white and male. Although fewer managers will prosecute Mr. Trump, the group chosen by Pelosi is far more diverse.

"The emphasis is on litigators. The emphasis is on comfort level in the courtroom," Pelosi said Wednesday. "The emphasis is on making the strongest case to protect our Constitution."

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Here is what you need to know about the newly impeachment managers:

Adam Schiff

Schiff, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, has perhaps been the most prominent member of Congress involved in the impeachment inquiry. In September, Schiff revealed the existence of an anonymous whistleblower complaint involving an "urgent concern" about alleged misconduct by senior administration officials or the president. That eventually led to the disclosure of the contacts between Mr. Trump and the Ukrainian president that became a central component of his impeachment. Schiff has become a frequent target of the president's ire.

Schiff served as an assistant U.S. attorney in the Central District of California for six years, and was elected as a California state senator in 1996, where he served until he was elected to Congress in 2000.

Jerry Nadler

Jerry Nadler, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has served in the House since 1993, and he's among the House Democrats who was in Congress during Mr. Clinton's impeachment. Republicans, including the president, have been resurfacing Nadler's remarks inveighing against impeachment in 1998 now. Two decades ago, Nadler defended Clinton and argued that there should "never be a narrowly voted impeachment or an impeachment substantially supported by one of our major political parties and largely opposed by the other." He added, "Such an impeachment would lack the legitimacy and produce divisiveness and bitterness in our politics for years to come."

There were no Republicans who voted in favor of impeaching Mr. Trump in December.

Nadler previously served 15 years in the New York Assembly. He has also served as the top Democrat on the Judiciary Subcommittee on Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties for 13 years.

Zoe Lofgren

Lofgren is a senior member of the Judiciary Committee, and has a long history of participation in impeachment inquiries — she has been involved in all three of the modern impeachment inquiries. Lofgren was a staffer on the House Judiciary Committee when the committee prepared articles for the impeachment of President Nixon. Elected to Congress in 1994, Lofgren was also a member of the Judiciary Committee during the impeachment of President Clinton.

While Lofgren said she didn't condone Mr. Clinton's misconduct, she argued that the courts, rather than Congress should provide the remedy in his case. Impeachment, she said in 1998, "punishes the Nation rather than the President." Conviction in a Senate trial, she predicted, would "weaken the executive branch of government and further divide this Nation." And she pointed to the people, who twice voted him into the presidency.

"They knew the President they elected. They know what he has done. They know he has behaved badly, but they don't want him removed from office," she argued at the time.

In Mr. Trump's impeachment case, she has accused Republicans of embracing the argument that "somehow, lying about a sexual affair is an abuse of presidential power, but the misuse of presidential power to get a benefit somehow doesn't matter."

Lofgren is also the chair of the Committee on House Administration.

Hakeem Jeffries

Jeffries, another member of the Judiciary Committee, is the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. Jeffries, a lawyer by training, served as a clerk for Judge Harold Baer, Jr. of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York before working as a litigator in private practice. He served in the New York Assembly before he was elected to Congress in 2012.

Val Demings

Demings is one of the few members of Congress who sits on both the House Intelligence and Judiciary Committees. She served in the Orlando Police Department in 27 years, and was the department's first woman chief. She's relatively new to Congress, having been elected in 2016. She is the only impeachment manager without a legal degree.

Jason Crow

Crow, who flipped a Republican seat in 2018, was a U.S. Army Ranger who served three tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. He became a litigator in private practice after his military service, and served on the Colorado Board of Veterans Affairs from 2009 to 2014.

Sylvia Garcia

Garcia served as Houston city controller before being elected to the Harris County Commissioner's Court in 2002, the first woman and first Latina elected to that post. Like Crow, she was elected to Congress in 2018.

First published on January 15, 2020 / 2:25 PM

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Grace Segers grace-headshot.jpg

Grace Segers is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.