The impeachment trial of Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner will resume next week with a tentative hearing date in January after a 107-85 vote in the Republican-controlled Pennsylvania State House.
Krasner, a Democrat who has campaigned for criminal justice reform and tougher punishment for police misconduct, has long drawn the ire of many Republicans.
House Republicans have claimed that Krasner’s reforms have led to an increase in homicides and gun-related crime in Philadelphia, as well as allegations that he mishandled criminal cases and obstructed a legislative committee attempting to investigate his office.
A Pennsylvania elected official has not been charged in more than 30 years. Only a small number of officers have attempted impeachment throughout the state’s history.
Erica Clayton Wright, spokeswoman for the Republican faction in the Senate, said the state Senate is following the impeachment process because it is the body’s constitutional obligation following a successful vote in the House of Representatives. She said continuing the process was “mandatory”.
“The Senate’s constitutional obligations are clear, so we stand ready to do our duty and continue the impeachment trial of Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner next week,” Senate Pro Tempore President Jake Corman said in a press release.
Corman said the plan is to reconvene the state Senate in session on Nov. 29-30 to begin the impeachment process and invite impeachment managers in the House of Representatives to formally introduce the impeachment articles.
Krasner then has until December 21 to comment on the charges in the impeachment proceedings before the Senate votes. The impeachment process is expected to begin on January 18.
After the Nov. 16 vote in the House of Representatives, Krasner said he intends to challenge the impeachment trial and tweeted about his electoral victories against challenges trying to unseat him.
Krasner was re-elected by a wide margin in both his primary and general election campaigns in 2021.
“The votes of Philadelphians and Philadelphia voters should not be erased,” Krasner tweeted Nov. 16. “History will harshly condemn this anti-democratic authoritarian attempt to erase Philly’s votes—votes of black, brown, and broke people in Philadelphia. And voters will have the final say.”