President Trump impeached a second time

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 13 January 2021 at 5:40 pm

10 Republicans join Democrats in voting to impeach for incitement of insurrection at Capitol

The House of Representatives voted 232-197 today to impeach Donald J. Trump for a second time, saying he cited an insurrection against the government a week ago when a mob stormed the Capitol, resulting in five deaths, including a police officer.

White House portrait of President Donald J. Trump

This time there were 10 Republicans to join Democrats in the impeachment vote, including John Katko, a congressman from near Syracuse.

Chris Jacobs, a Republican in the 27th District which includes Orleans, opposed impeachment said it was rushed without due process, and set “a dangerous precedent to further politically weaponize impeachment.”

Brian Higgins, a Democrat from Buffalo, was among those voting to impeach.

“The facts are clear and compelling – President Trump incited an insurrection against America’s democracy,” Higgins said.

Trump was first impeached in the House on Dec. 18, 2019 but acquitted in the Senate on Feb. 5, 2020 on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConell, R-Kentucky, said there “is simply no chance that a fair or serious trial could conclude before President-elect Biden is sworn in next week.”

McConnell said the Senate has held three presidential impeachment trials and they lasted 83 days, 37 days, and 21 days, respectively.

The quickest path for a change in the presidency is for Biden to be sworn in on Jan. 20, McConnell said in a statement.

“In light of this reality, I believe it will best serve our nation if Congress and the executive branch spend the next seven days completely focused on facilitating a safe inauguration and an orderly transfer of power to the incoming Biden Administration,” McConnell said. “I am grateful to the offices and institutions within the Capitol that are working around the clock, alongside federal and local law enforcement, to prepare for a safe and successful inauguration at the Capitol next Wednesday.”

Here is Chris Jacobs’ full statement on impeachment:

“The events of last week were horrific, and the violence we witnessed has no place in our democracy. Those responsible must be held accountable for their actions. I want to thank the brave men and women of the United States Capitol Police who showed true heroism while protecting me, my colleagues, and thousands of staff members and aides.

“Our nation is clearly divided. Healing this division and moving the country forward should be our first and foremost priority. This rushed impeachment proceeding accomplishes none of these goals, especially given that the President has agreed to an orderly and peaceful transition of power on January 20th, 2021.

“Impeachment has been used rarely in our nation’s history, and when it has been used the House of Representatives has carried out a full and deliberate process complete with an investigation, hearings led by the Judiciary Committee, and a mark-up of the articles of impeachment before a vote is called. We witnessed none of that today. The process was rushed, avoided due process, and set a dangerous precedent to further politically weaponize impeachment.

“Because of the abbreviated process, the short length left in the President’s term, and his commitment to a peaceful transition, I voted against the articles of impeachment today. Our nation has significant challenges we still need to address – including the on-going Covid-19 crisis.

“Our focus should be on tackling these very serious and pressing issues while we work to heal a deeply divided nation. Now is the time to move forward, not take additional divisive action at a time when our country cannot bear it.

“The peaceful transition of power is a hallmark of our American democracy; it is what sets us apart. Now more than ever, I believe all Americans need to see that transition process occur, as it always has, to reaffirm that our democracy is still strong, healthy, and unbreakable.”

Brian Higgins, a Democrat from Buffalo, issued this statement:

“The facts are clear and compelling – President Trump incited an insurrection against America’s democracy,” Higgins said in a statement. “Through words and actions, Trump publicly broadcast the evidence in the lead-up to the attack. The outcome of his actions was on full display for the world to see with Members of Congress serving as both targets and first-hand witnesses. Efforts to minimize, accept or excuse this insurrection represents a failure by Members to live up to our oath and a failure to protect the democracy this country was founded on and other nations have aspired to model. Members who oppose impeachment are either wrong, weak or both.”

Elise Stefanik, a Republican from Northern New York who opposed impeachment, issued this statement:

“I am vehemently opposed to the snap impeachment of President Trump. It is a partisan ploy with no basis in the Constitution. The Democrats’ decision to impeach the President with one week remaining in his term further fuels the divisions in the country during this very trying time. As Members of the United States Congress, we should focus on unifying our country by delivering solutions to the American people.”

U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-NY, issued this statement:

“Donald Trump deservedly becomes the first president in American history to bear the stain of impeachment twice over. The Senate is required to act and will proceed with his trial and hold a vote on his conviction.

“Despite the efforts of Donald Trump and violent insurrectionists, America is not a dictatorship. We have been and will forever remain a Democracy that respects and reveres the rule of law, including the bedrock principle that the voters choose our leaders — that just power can only derive from the consent of the governed.

“Now that the House of Representatives has acted, the Senate will hold a fair trial on the impeachment of Donald J. Trump for his role in inciting the violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th and attempting to overturn a free and fair election.

“A Senate trial can begin immediately, with agreement from the current Senate Majority Leader to reconvene the Senate for an emergency session, or it will begin after January 19th. But make no mistake, there will be an impeachment trial in the United States Senate; there will be a vote on convicting the president for high crimes and misdemeanors; and if the president is convicted, there will be a vote barring him from running again.

“The president of the United States incited a violent mob against the duly elected government of the United States in a vicious, depraved and desperate attempt to remain in power. For the sake of our democracy, it cannot and must not be tolerated, excused, or go unpunished.”