Donald Trump has officially become the first president in United States history to be impeached twice. The House of Representatives voted on one article of impeachment that formally charges Trump with “incitement of insurrection” after a mob left his Jan. 6 rally and violently attacked the U.S. Capitol. The resolution states in plain terms that Trump “gravely endangered the security of the United States and its institutions of government.” Ten Republicans broke with their party to impeach Trump with less than seven days left in his term. The vote was 232-197.
“We are debating this historic measure at an actual crime scene, and we wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the President of the United States,” said Democratic Rep. Jim McGovern, D-MA, to open the debate on the House floor on Wednesday. “People died,” he expressed, “Everybody should be outraged. If this is not an impeachable offense, I don’t know what the hell is.”
After two hours of debate, several Republican lawmakers joined with Democrats to reprimand Trump in his final days in office. Herrera Beutler, R-WA, wrote in a statement, “The President of the United States incited a riot aiming to halt the peaceful transfer of power from one administration to the next.” She added, “That riot led to five deaths.”
Republican Rep. John Katko echoed Beutler, tweeting, “To allow the president of the United States to incite this attack without consequence is a direct threat to the future of our democracy […] I will vote to impeach this president.”
Other GOP backers of the impeachment include Rep. Adam Kinzinger, Rep. Fred Upton, Sen. Pat Toomey and Sen. Lisa Murkowski, and perhaps the most vocal among them, Rep. Liz Cheney, R-WY. Liz Cheney.
“The president of the United States summoned this mob, assembled the mob and lit the flame of this attack,” Rep. Cheney tweeted, “The president could have immediately and forcefully intervened to stop the violence. He did not. There has never been a greater betrayal by a president of the United States.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is said to be privately in support of the House’s impeachment effort but has refused to use his emergency powers to reconvene the Senate for a speedy trial before Joe Biden’s inauguration.
Other Republicans, including Rep. Matt Rosendale, Rep. Andy Bigg, and Rep. Jim Jordan –– one of Trump’s staunchest goons in the President’s election conspiracy –– have condemned their Republican detractors. Jordan has gone so far as to call for Cheney’s removal from Congress, saying in a statement, “When Representative Cheney came out for impeachment today, she failed to consult with the Conference, failed to abide by the spirit of the rules of the Republican Conference, and ignored the preferences of Republican voters […] She must step down as Conference Chair.”
As the procedural votes are underway, the Capitol has been fortified tightly with multiple layers of law enforcement, including Capitol Police and National Guard officers, who have laid down barricades outside the entrances and installed a new magnetometer for security screenings –– measures which are, of course, a far cry law enforcement’s presence in their preparation of last week’s riot.
House votes to impeach Donald Trump for inciting an insurrection The British Journal Editors and Wire Services/ Salon.