Trump becomes first US President to be impeached twice
The US House of Representatives has impeached President Donald Trump for a second time days before he leaves office.
According to media reports, a week before he will leave office, Trump became the first president impeached by the US House twice. The chamber charged him with “high crimes and misdemeanors for inciting an insurrection” at the US Capitol seven days ago.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said the chamber plans to send an article of impeachment to the Senate immediately, though the chamber may not have enough time to remove Trump before President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration Jan. 20.
Trump’s behavior in the 13 months since the first impeachment left the Democrats making a more clear-cut case than the first time around. The chamber charged Trump in a 232-197 vote, as all Democrats and 10 Republicans backed the measure.
The four-page article of impeachment the chamber approved on Wednesday argues Trump fed his supporters months of false claims that widespread fraud cost him the 2020 election, then urged them to contest the results before they marched to the Capitol and disrupted Congress’ count of Biden’s win.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, said after the House vote that the upper chamber would not start the trial until “our first regular meeting following receipt of the article from the House” — Tuesday at the earliest. The timeline means the impeachment proceedings will likely drag into Biden’s term, which starts Jan. 20.
“Even if the Senate process were to begin this week and move promptly, no final verdict would be reached until after Trump had left office,” McConnell said in a statement on Wednesday. “This is not a decision I am making; it is a fact.”
Democrats urged the US Vice President Mike Pence and the cabinet to start the faster process of removing Trump through the 25th Amendment.
Pence refused, arguing in a letter Tuesday to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that the move is not “in the best interest of our Nation or consistent with our Constitution.”
Pelosi opened the impeachment debate on the House floor Wednesday and argued the country cannot risk leaving the president in power.