In a bipartisan vote, The House of Representatives impeached President Donald Trump for the second time in his role of inciting the Capitol insurrection that led to the death of five people Jan. 6.
Trump becomes the first president to have been impeached two times.
The single article of impeachment for “incitement of insurrection had the support of all 222 Democrats and 10 Republicans. The final vote, which was done at breakneck speed, was 232 to 197.
Nancy Pelosi, House Speaker, said the U.S. president incited the insurrection, leading to an armed rebellion against the Congress’ due process to certify the election naming Joe Biden as the winner.
Pelosi called the president a clear and present danger to democracy. She said Trump has to go.
Trump’s first impeachment occurred in December 2019 after his pressure on Ukraine to investigate Biden and his family. The second impeachment took place only a week before Biden would be sworn into the presidency. There have only been two presidents impeached since the republic was founded – Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton.
During a Jan. 6 rally, Trump, Rudy Guiliani, several senators and others, urged supporters to “fight like hell” against Congress members who were mobilizing at the Capitol building. All riled up from the speeches, the mob marched over to the Capitol and broke into the complex. They broke windows and doors, allowing them access to Congress’ halls.
For many hours, the mob was able to stop the electoral vote counting.
The speed at which House Democrats drafted and brought forth the impeachment article is unprecedented but was in response to the seriousness of the Capitol assault and Trump’s remaining time in office. The article of impeachment was introduced the Monday after the Jan. 6 assault, with Democrats bypassing the normal hearing and investigation processes.
The Senate will take up the article of impeachment soon after The House of Representatives and Pelosi sends it over. Senate lawmakers will hold a trial to convict Trump and remove him from office and bar him from holding any federal government office in the future.
Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Leader, opted not to bring back senators, which is set to reconvene Jan. 19. McConnell has yet to decide if he’ll agree to convict the president.
With just a couple of days left of the Trump administration, the Senate trial will extend into Biden’s term. The Senate can choose to convict him and agree that Trump should never have a federal office position again. A Senate conviction needs at least two-thirds.
Trump continues to refuse any culpability in the failed Jan. 6 insurrection, with his insistence that his speech was totally appropriate.