Pushing ahead with a last-minute plan to oust President Donald Trump before his presidency ends in mere days, House Democrats on Monday released an article of impeachment, charging Trump with “inciting violence against the government of the United States.”
They also charged that the president “willfully made statements that encouraged—and foreseeably resulted in—imminent lawless action at the Capitol. Incited by President Trump, a mob unlawfully breached the Capitol, injured law enforcement personnel, interfered with the Joint Session’s solemn constitutional duty to certify the election results, and engaged in violent, deadly, destructive, and seditious acts.”
Early last Wednesday, before Congress met to formally certify the Electoral College results of the November presidential election, Trump addressed thousands of supporters in an outdoor rally outside the White House.
House Democrats today insist that after the violent storming of the Capitol, those remarks incited “insurrection.”
Many Republicans have already issued statements and comments against any such impeachment actions, including Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH). They believe these actions—as well as Pelosi’s pursuit of the 25th Amendment—would only further inflame tensions. House Republicans have blocked quick consideration of a bill calling on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from the White House.
In a statement on Twitter, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA), wrote, “I stand with GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy in calling on Congress and Joe Biden to address actions to unify our nation and not engaging in activities such as impeachment that will further divide us.”
McCarthy, the House Minority Leader, issued a statement several days ago that said, in part, “Let me be very clear: The violence, destruction, and chaos that unfolded at the Capitol on Wednesday was unacceptable, undemocratic, and un-American. When I spoke to President Trump on Wednesday, I told him he had a great responsibility to intervene to quell the3 mob and start the healing process for our country. Over the coming weeks we will work with law enforcement to bring anyone responsible for the violence to justice.”
McCarthy also said in his statement, “Our country is not just divided. We are deeply hurt. The task ahead for the next Congress and incoming Biden Administration couldn’t be more momentous. But to deliver a better America for all, partisans of all stripes first must unite as Americans and show our country that a peaceful transition of power has occurred. Impeaching the president with just 12 days left in his term will only divide our country more.”
Read the Republican leader’s full statement here.
Here is other response and reaction to the morning’s events, plus some related developments:
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Maureen Mackey is a writer, editor, and web content strategist.