House Democrats formally introduced an article of impeachment against President Donald Trump on Tuesday, charging him with “incitement of insurrection” for his role in the takeover of the U.S. Capitol last week by a violent pro-Trump mob. The House could vote as early as Wednesday.
The House could vote later this week on impeaching Trump an unprecedented second time, a consequence of events last Wednesday when a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol.
“He also willfully made statements that, in context, encouraged—and foreseeably resulted in—lawless action at the Capitol,” the resolution reads.
It adds: “Thus incited by President Trump, members of the crowd he had addressed, in an attempt to, among other objectives, interfere with the Joint Session’s solemn constitutional duty to certify the results of the 2020 Presidential election, unlawfully breached and vandalized the Capitol, injured and killed law enforcement personnel, menaced Members of Congress, the Vice President, and Congressional personnel, and engaged in other violent, deadly, destructive, and seditious acts.”
In Monday’s brief session, House Republicans blocked a measure calling on Vice President Mike Pence and Trump’s Cabinet to remove him under the 25th Amendment.
The procedural move by the GOP to block consideration of the measure under unanimous consent will force the full House to vote Tuesday on the resolution. The resolution pressures Pence to initiate proceedings to remove Trump in the wake of the attack on the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob and comes as calls for Trump’s impeachment grow.
The 25th Amendment gives the vice president, plus a majority of the Cabinet, the ability to remove the president from office if they determine he “is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.”
The resolution, written by Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., calls on Pence “to immediately use his powers under section 4 of the 25th Amendment to convene and mobilize the principal officers of the executive departments in the Cabinet to declare what is obvious to a horrified Nation: That the President is unable to successfully discharge the duties and powers of his office.”
During a pro forma floor session Monday, Rep. Alex Mooney, R-W.Va., objected to considering the measure under unanimous consent.
Meanwhile, 22 Republican former House and Senate members are urging current members of Congress to move forward with Trump’s impeachment, aiming to bolster bipartisan support for a move that could occur this week.
“There is no excuse for nor defense of a President of the United States to actively orchestrate an insurrection on a separate but coequal branch of government,” a letter written by the group says. “Surely, the Founders would be sickened by the thought of such actions. As members of the branch that was under attack – not just politically but physically – you must remove the president from office.”
Notable signers include former House members Barbara Comstock of Virginia and Charlie Dent of Pennsylvania, and organizers said they expect the number of those signing on to continue to grow.
“Congress must send a strong and clear message not just to this president but future presidents that this type of behavior will not be tolerated or accepted,” the letter says. “Frankly, the message also needs to be made clear to the American people that there is no place in politics for political violence.”
The letter argues that a central advantage of impeaching Trump and removing him from office would be to prevent him from holding federal office again.