Support continues to grow among Democrats for impeaching President Trump over the Capitol riot and a new Republican senator indicated openness to such a step, while the president remained out of public view and authorities charged more rioters, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday.
“An expanding number of House Democrats had signed onto an article of impeachment by Saturday that a trio of House Democrats plan to introduce on Monday. Their single article of impeachment focuses on Wednesday’s violent breach of the Capitol complex and accuses the president of inciting an insurrection,” WSJ wrote.
Democrats in the House of Representatives plan to introduce misconduct charges on Monday that could lead to a second impeachment of Trump, sources familiar with the matter said. “If the President does not leave office imminently and willingly, the Congress will proceed with our action,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement.
From Ilhan Omar and Alexandria Occasio-Cortez to Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, Democrats banded together to call for Trump’s impeachment to ensure he can never run for office again. One of its authors, Rep. David Cicilline (D., R.I.), said Saturday on CNN that they now have 185 Democratic supporters and hope to get some Republicans as well, up from more than 150 on Friday as fallout from the deadly riot at the Capitol continued. “We have a responsibility to hold him accountable and take this action,” Mr. Cicilline told CNN.
It is not only Democrats who want Trump impeached, but a growing number of Republicans also have sought his removal before he is officially scheduled to leave office on January 20th. “We are witnessing absolute banana republic crap in the United States Capitol right now,” Mike Gallagher, a Republican representative from Wisconsin, tweeted, adding an appeal to Trump: “You need to call this off.”
Sen. Lisa Murkowski became the first Republican U.S. senator to say Trump should resign immediately, and Republican Ben Sasse said he would “definitely consider” impeachment. Senator Pat Toomey, a conservative supporter of Trump said on Sunday: “I think the best way for our country is for the president to resign and go away as soon as possible,” Toomey said on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” calling Trump’s behavior since the election “outrageous.” Toomey said he did not think there was time for impeachment with only 10 days left in Trump’s term, and noted there did not appear to be consensus to use the Constitution’s 25th Amendment to strip Trump of his powers.
Republican Trump, who has falsely contested the validity of Democrat Joe Biden’s Nov. 3 presidential victory, praised and egged on his supporters before they laid siege to the Capitol, where lawmakers were certifying the Electoral College vote for Biden.
The chaotic scenes unfolded after Trump addressed thousands of protesters and repeated unfounded claims that the election was stolen from him. Five people died and 64 were arrested as protesters forced their way into the building. Under pressure on Thursday, Trump took a more conciliatory tone – promising a smooth transfer of power and calling for ‘healing and reconciliation.’
Even though Trump has only two weeks in office, people pointed out that keeping him in office for even this period could put the country in danger. The New York Times columnist Brett Stephens said in an opinion piece, “To allow Trump to serve out his term, however brief it may be, puts the nation’s safety at risk, leaves our reputation as a democracy in tatters and evades the inescapable truth that the assault on Congress was an act of violent sedition aided and abetted by a lawless, immoral and terrifying president.”
Fifty-seven percent of Americans want President Donald Trump to be immediately removed from office after he encouraged a protest this week that escalated into a deadly riot inside the U.S. Capitol, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll. An overwhelming majority of Democrats support impeachment, Republicans apparently much more supportive of Trump serving out the final days of his term, which ends on Jan. 20.
A Reuters/Ipsosnational public opinion survey, conducted Thursday and Friday, showed that seven out of 10 of those who voted for Trump in November opposed the action of the hardcore supporters who broke into the Capitol while lawmakers were meeting to certify the election victory of Democrat Joe Biden.Nearly 70% of Americans surveyed also said they disapprove of Trump’s actions in the run-up to Wednesday’s assault. At a rally earlier in the day, Trump had exhorted thousands of his followers to march to the Capitol.
Seventy-nine percent of adults, including two-thirds of Republicans and Trump voters, described the participants as either “criminals” or “fools.” Nine percent saw them as “concerned citizens” and 5% called them “patriots.”The Reuters/Ipsos poll was conducted online, in English, throughout the United States. It gathered responses from 1,005 American adults, including 339 who said they voted for Trump. The results have a credibility interval, a measure of precision, of 4 percentage points.
It was unclear whether a significant number of other Republicans would follow suit. Republican leaders have urged the Democratic-led House not to initiate impeachment proceedings for a historic second time against Trump. A few Republicans have joined Democrats’ call for Vice President Mike Pence to exercise the 25th Amendment to remove Trump. Pence has opposed the idea, an adviser said.
CNN reports suggest that Vice President Mike Pence has not ruled out an effort to invoke the 25th Amendment and wants to preserve the option in case President Donald Trump becomes more unstable. Quoting a source close to the vice president, CNN reported that there is some concern inside Pence’s team that there are risks to invoking the 25th Amendment or even to an impeachment process, as Trump could take some sort of rash action putting the nation at risk.
(Picture Courtesy: WSJ)