Trump becomes the first US president to be impeached twice
Article of impeachment reaches majority level of support
House votes on article of impeachment against Trump
Seventh House Republican says he will support impeachment
Peter Meijer, a Republican congressman from Michigan, has become the seventh Republican House member to say he will support the impeachment of Donald Trump.
“The President betrayed his oath of office by seeking to undermine our constitutional process, and he bears responsibility for inciting the insurrection last week,” Meijer said in a statement. “With a heavy heart, I will vote to impeach President Donald J. Trump.”
Meijer, a freshman congressman, previously said he was considering supporting impeachment, but this is the first time he has clearly said he will do so.
Seven Republicans have now said they will vote to impeach Trump, which means the president will be impeached in a bipartisan vote. When Trump was impeached the first time, only Democrats supported the measure.
The debate on the article of impeachment against Donald Trump is now wrapping up, and the House will soon move on to the final vote on impeachment.
Steve Scalise, the House minority whip, was the final Republican speaker, and he applauded the Capitol Police officers who work to protect lawmakers every day. Two Capitol Police officers have died since last week, when a violent, pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol.
House members in the chamber stood to applaud the fallen Capitol Police officers, marking a rare moment of bipartisanship during today’s contentious debate.
The House majority leader, Steny Hoyer, is the final Democratic speaker, and he has repeatedly cited the words of Republican Liz Cheney, who has said she will support impeachment.
“Will we stay silent, will we not stand up and say this is not acceptable?” Hoyer said. “Donald Trump has constructed a glass house of lies, fear-mongering and sedition.”
McConnell indicates he is open to convicting Trump
The Guardian’s Daniel Strauss reports:
Mitch McConnell, the top-ranking Republican in the Senate, indicated to colleagues that he is undecided on how he would vote on impeachment.
In a letter to his Senate colleagues sent out Wednesday afternoon, as members of the House moved forward with impeaching Donald Trump, the Kentucky Republican wrote, “while the press has been full of speculation, I have not made a final decision on how I will vote and I intend to listen to the legal arguments when they are presented to the Senate.”
The line in his note to Senate colleagues follows The New York Times reporting Tuesday night that McConnell is pleased with Democrats’ move to impeach the president again and has been sharing that sentiment with associates.
McConnell’s openness to impeaching the president, a fellow Republican, is the most significant sign so far that congressional Republican leaders are less resistant to Trump’s impeachment than the last time the president was impeached.
In the House, congresswoman Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the House Republican Conference chair, said she would vote to impeach Trump. Five other House Republicans have also come out in support of impeachment.
It’s unclear how Senate Republicans will vote. It’s also unclear if McConnell’s openness will offer cover for other Republicans who privately would like to see the president impeached. Two-thirds of senators would have to support conviction in order for him to be removed from office.
Young Kim, a freshman Republican congresswoman who flipped a California district that Donald Trump lost by 10 points, will vote against impeachment.
“The violence we saw last week was disgusting. Our law enforcement was attacked, lives were lost and more were put in danger. These rioters must be held accountable. Words have consequences and I believe the president should also be held accountable,” Kim said in a statement.
“However, I believe impeaching the president at this time will fail to hold him accountable or allow us to move forward once President-elect Biden is sworn in. This process will only create more fissures in our country as we emerge from some of our darkest days.”
So far, only six House Republicans have signaled they intend to support the article of impeachment.
Chip Roy, a Republican of Texas who has criticized his colleagues’ efforts to cast baseless doubt upon the legitimacy of the presidential election, said he believed Donald Trump had committed “impeachable” offenses.
“The president of the United States deserves universal condemnation for what was clearly, in my opinion, impeachable conduct, pressuring the vice president to violate his oath to the constitution.” Roy said in his speech.
And yet Roy will not be supporting the article of impeachment. The congressman argued the article had been drafted in a manner that targeted political speech itself.
Here’s what the article says, in part: “Donald John Trump engaged in high Crimes and Misdemeanors by inciting violence against the Government of the United States ...
“Donald John Trump, by such conduct, has demonstrated that he will remain a threat to national security, democracy, and the Constitution if allowed to remain in office[.]”