(Bloomberg) — Two of the highest-profile issues confronting Donald Trump’s presidency came to a head simultaneously on Friday: China trade and impeachment.
A top Chinese official announced the first phase of a trade deal at almost the exact moment the House Judiciary Committee recommended Trump’s impeachment.
It was just the latest split-screen moment of the Trump presidency. But few have been as dramatic as what unfolded on Friday with trade and impeachment — one that Trump cited as a major accomplishment and the other reflecting bitter partisan disagreement over his conduct that will lead to a trial in the Senate.
The trade announcement by Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen in Beijing that China and the U.S. have agreed on the text of a phase one trade deal was a step toward defusing a trade war that’s threatened to upend the economy ahead of the 2020 election.
It came as the Judiciary Committee voted along party lines to approve articles of impeachment against Trump.
One of the articles accuses Trump of “corruptly soliciting” investigations in Ukraine that would aid his re-election campaign. The second alleges that no previous U.S. president “has ever ordered such complete defiance of an impeachment inquiry or sought to obstruct and impeded so comprehensively the ability of the House of Representatives to investigate ‘high crimes and misdemeanors.’”
The House is expected to vote on the articles next week, when Trump is likely to become the third president in history to be impeached.
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