Only one week after an insurrectionist riot in the Capitol building which left 6 people dead, the House of Representatives voted 232 to 197 to impeach President Trump just seven days before the end of his term of office. The impeachment is an indictment of the President for “high crimes and misdemeanors,” specifically the incitement of a violent coup attempt against the federal government.
Trump is now the first U.S. President to be impeached twice, and the first to be impeached for a violent action. The articles of impeachment specifically lay the blood of the first police officer to die, USCP Officer Brian Sicknick on Trump’s hands. The vote was mostly split along party lines, but ten Republicans broke the party line to vote yes for the impeachment in the same room where they crouched, fearing for their lives, only a few days ago.
“None of this would have happened without the President,” said Rep. Liz Cheney, a Republican representative for Wyoming on Tuesday explaining her vote. “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 of his office and his oath to the Constitution.”
Even those who voted not to impeach were not kind to President Trump.
“The president bears responsibility for Wednesday’s attack on Congress by mob rioters,” said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California. “He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding.” But McCarthy objected to the impeachment due to, he says, the rushed vote and a lack of a fact-finding commission.
The impeachment trial before the Senate against President Trump will not take place before President Biden is sworn in on January 20th, according to the office of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. If he is convicted by the Senate, he will probably (but not certainly) be barred from holding any federal office ever again.
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