}

National

Behind the scenes on Capitol Hill as Pelosi leads the House to impeach Trump

The truth is in the numbers somewhere: in a 16-minute phone call between President Trump and President-elect Volodomyr Zelensky of Ukraine; or in a nine-page letter from a whistleblower; or in the blizzard of interviews recorded afterward while members of the House considered impeachment. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), at first reluctantly, led the team through five months of hearings and analysis to reach a final number: two articles of impeachment. Washington Post photographers captured the private moments of members of Congress as they straddled the delicate task of a presidential impeachment.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Pelosi speaks to her chairmen during a meeting in her office on Dec. 10.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam B. Schiff and other members of the House leadership announce the specific articles of impeachment during a news conference on Dec. 10.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, left, leads a meeting of the House chairmen, with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Schiff, center, briefing colleagues on impeachment efforts in the Hoyer's conference room on Dec. 11.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

House Judiciary staff read the articles of impeachment at the committee's markup on Capitol Hill on Dec. 12.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) leaves after the House panel voted on articles of impeachment of Trump on Capitol Hill on Dec. 13.

Astrid Riecken/For The Washington Post

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) fields questions from journalists after the House panel voted on articles of impeachment on Dec. 13.

Astrid Riecken/For The Washington Post

The Capitol building on a cold, rainy Dec. 16 morning.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) arrives to a news conference about the impeachment process in the Senate on Capitol Hill on Dec. 16.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) arrives at the Capitol and is greeted by journalists on Dec. 16.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.), chairman of the House Rules Committee, leaves the committee meeting room on Capitol Hill on Dec. 17.

Astrid Riecken/For The Washington Post

Pelosi meets with her committee chairman. From left, Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.), Schiff , Richard E. Neal (D-Mass.), Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) and Eliot L. Engel (D-N.Y.) in her office on Dec. 17.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

House general counsel Doug Letter works in Pelosi's office between votes on Capitol Hill on Dec. 17.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Sen. James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.), right, reviews the roll call outside the Senate gallery on Dec. 17.

Astrid Riecken/For The Washington Post

A pedestrian walks outside the Capitol on Dec. 18.

Matt McClain/The Washington Post

Pelosi walks across the floor of Statuary Hall at the Capitol on Dec. 18.

Matt McClain/The Washington Post

A staff member makes a call on Capitol Hill on Dec. 18.

Salwan Georges/The Washington Post

Schumer watches the impeachment vote on a television in his office at the Capitol on Dec. 18.

Salwan Georges/The Washington Post

Pelosi gavels the vote on the second articles of impeachment against Trump on Dec. 18.

Matt McClain/The Washington Post

Republican lawmakers stand on the floor of the chamber during the vote.

Matt McClain/The Washington Post

Pelosi oversees the vote on the second articles of impeachment against Trump on Dec. 18.

Matt McClain/The Washington Post

A cold meal awaits Pelosi in her empty office as she presides over the passage of two articles to impeach Trump on Dec. 18.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Pelosi meets with her chairman in her office at the end of the day after presiding over the impeachment vote on Dec. 18.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post

Pelosi walks to her desk at the end of the historic day.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post