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U.S. House most likely to consider impeaching Trump this week

Vice President Mike Pence and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., read the final certification of Electoral College votes cast in November's presidential election during a joint session of Congress after working through the night, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021.   | Photo Credit: AP

The U.S House of Representatives plans to vote on a resolution on Monday to ask Vice- President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, a statute by which the President — Donald Trump — can be removed on grounds of incapacitation. This comes days after Mr. Trump’s supporters attacked the Capitol building. If Mr. Pence does not invoke the statute, the House will consider impeaching Mr. Trump, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a letter to fellow House Democrats on Sunday evening (U.S. time).

“In protecting our Constitution and our Democracy, we will act with urgency, because this President represents an imminent threat to both. As the days go by, the horror of the ongoing assault on our democracy perpetrated by this President is intensified and so is the immediate need for action,” Ms. Pelosi wrote.

Given Mr. Pence’s apparent hesitation to invoke the 25th Amendment it is highly likely the House will seek to impeach Mr. Trump this week. There are 10 days left in Mr. Trump’s term and if impeached he will the first President to be impeached twice. If convicted in the Senate, Mr. Trump could be barred from running for office again in the future.

Several Democrats plan to introduce impeachment resolutions on Monday. One resolution, which will be introduced by Rhode Island Congressman David Cicilline, Maryland’s Jamie Raskin and California’s Ted Lieu includes a charge of “ incitement of insurrection” against Mr. Trump. At least 210 of 222 House Democrats have signed on to this, as per The New York Times.

It is theoretically possible that if Mr. Trump is impeached on Tuesday, the articles could be sent to the Senate for trial as early as Wednesday. However, the new administration and Congress will need to focus on a COVID-19 response and cabinet appointments and House Democrats may delay sending the charges to the Senate, where the trial has to begin immediately. Democratic Whip, Representative James E. Clyburn of South Carolina, told the CNN that they might not send the articles to the Senate until after 100 days of the Biden administration.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2021 12:57:20 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/us-house-most-likely-to-consider-impeaching-trump-this-week/article33547722.ece

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