Thursday, January 21

Donald Trump becomes first US president to be impeached twice after landmark Congress vote


A week after supporters of US President Donald Trump burst onto Capitol Hill, the House of Representatives on Wednesday (January 13) approved his indictment for “Incitement to insurgency” during a speech given before the violence. A week before the end of his term, Mr. Trump therefore faces a second “Impeachment”, a first for a president in the history of the United States and an impeachment trial must now take place in the Senate.

Read also: The Democratic dilemma in the face of an indictment of Donald Trump

“The President of the United States incited this insurrection, this armed rebellion”Democrats leader Nancy Pelosi said before continuing: “He must go, he is an obvious and immediate danger against the nation we all love”.

While the indictment did not receive a single Republican vote in the Ukraine affair over a year ago, several party members joined, this time, the Democrats already in the majority in the lower house of Congress. Five elected members of the “Grand Old Party” had announced their support before the vote: among them, Liz Cheney, one of the leaders of the Republican minority in the House and daughter of the former American vice-president, Dick Cheney. “None of this would have happened without the president”, she had estimated in a press release.

House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy assured him this procedure was ” a mistake ” : if the outgoing president wears a ” responsibility “ in the violence of the Capitol, on January 6, he admitted, the creation ” investigative committee “ and the vote of a ” motion of censure ” would have been, according to him, the way forward.

Possible support for Mitch McConnell in the Senate

If the Democrats take control of the upper house on January 20, the day of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, they will need the rallying of many Republicans to achieve the two-thirds majority necessary for conviction. The holding of the trial also risks hampering the legislative action of the Democrats at the start of the Biden presidency, by monopolizing the sessions in the Senate.

Article reserved for our subscribers Read also Daniel Ziblatt: “The American Republican Party has been able to mobilize certain groups, often the most radical, so well that it is today a prisoner”

Mitch McConnell, leader of the Republican majority in the upper house, has also indicated that he does not intend to use his prerogatives to summon senators this week, thus ruling out any possibility that the hearings will be completed before the transition between the two administrations is completed.

Mitch McConnell would have at the same time told his relatives that he viewed this indictment favorably, judging that it was founded and that it would help the Republican Party to definitively turn the page Donald Trump. This skilful strategist, very influential, perhaps holds the key to the outcome of this historic procedure because a single public speech could encourage Republican senators to condemn the 45e President of the United States.

Donald Trump denounces a “witch hunt”

Every day a little more isolated in his own camp, Donald Trump tried, Tuesday, to reduce the procedure aimed at yet another maneuver by the Democrats, a new one ” witch hunt “. A few days before his departure for Mar-a-Lago, Florida, where he should begin his new life as a“Ex-president”, however, it appears increasingly out of touch with what is happening in the American federal capital.

From Alamo, Texas, Donald Trump certainly tried on Tuesday to adopt a less aggressive posture than last week, evoking the weather “Peace and quiet”. But he also stubbornly refused to acknowledge any responsibility for the assault on Capitol Hill, deeming his speech to have been “Quite suitable”. “NO violence, NO crime, NO vandalism”, he urged in a statement, sent to conservative Fox News on Wednesday – his Twitter account having been closed – as new protests are announced for the weekend.

Read also: “This crisis shows how much Trump has managed to divert the Republican Party from its principles”

His vice-president Mike Pence later permanently dismissed the other threat to his end of term, by refusing to invoke the 25e amendment of the Constitution which would have enabled him to dismiss the outgoing president, declaring him unfit to exercise his function. Despite his displayed confidence and the support of some very loyal elected officials, Donald Trump is more alone than ever after a series of resignations from his government and scathing criticism.

Our selection of articles on the presidential election in the United States

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On the occupation of the Capitol:

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The World with AFP


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