House to select impeachment managers
Source: Convicting Torres at Senate trial an uphill battle
House of Representatives Speaker Edmund S. Villagomez (Ind-Saipan) said yesterday that they will soon be selecting the impeachment managers in the trial of Gov. Ralph DLG Torres at the Senate.
In response to Saipan Tribune’s inquiry about the House’s next step regarding the impeachment, Villagomez said for now, they are just waiting on the Senate in terms of their rules for their part of the process.
The speaker said the impeachment managers have to be from the House of Representatives. He did not indicate how many impeachment managers will be chosen.
The impeachment managers will serve as prosecutors during the trial at the Senate.
Villagomez also disclosed that the articles of impeachment should have already been transmitted to the Senate and, if not, then it is in the process.
As of press time yesterday, Saipan Tribune was still awaiting the reply of Senate President Jude U. Hofschneider (R-Tinian) on a request for information as to what’s the Senate first step pertaining to the impeachment matter.
The Democrat Party-controlled House approved last Wednesday the six articles of impeachment against Torres, making him the second governor in CNMI history to be impeached. With 15 “yes” votes, four “no” votes, and one abstention, the House passed House Resolution No. 22-14, impeaching Torres for alleged commission of felonies, corruption, and neglect of duty.
The impeachment votes set the stage for Torres’ trial in the Senate, which will decide whether to acquit or convict and remove him from office.
The nine-member Senate is controlled by the Republicans. Torres is the titular head of the NMI Republican Party. The Senate will need a two-third vote—six votes—to convict and remove Torres.
A source at the Legislature said over the weekend that it would be an uphill battle to convict Torres since, unlike in the House, the Republicans are united in the Senate.
The Senate has six Republicans—Hofschneider, Francisco Q. Cruz, Karl R. King-Nabors, Vinnie Vinson F. Sablan, Justo S. Quitugua, and Victor B. Hocog. There are two independents—Teresita A. Santos and Paul A. Manglona—and one Democrat, Edith E. DeLeon Guerrero.