The move would remove Trump from power in his final days as president before the. If the impeachment articles are initiated, it would be the second time in his presidency that Trump would face the trial – and make him the first president in history to be impeached twice.
On Friday morning, some predicted that there could be a vote in the House of Representatives halfway through next week.
As the situation in Washington develops, we’ll explain the limitations of impeachment, what the timeline would be before Biden was sworn in as president, and where the situation stands now.
Is it too late to impeach Trump before Biden takes office?
Impeachment can be a long process, but if passed by both houses of Congress, the effects can be long-lasting. Not only would Trump be removed from the presidency, he would also be disqualified from a second term of office, or “ an Office of Honor, Trust of Profit under the United States, ” under the Constitution (Article 1, paragraph 3).
When Trump was impeached in December 2019, the entire process took months – from inquiries and inquiries that began in September 2019 to the senate that acquitted him on February 6, 2020. Given the traditionally slow process, it could take too long to remove Trump from office ahead of Biden’s inauguration on January 20.
It is not clear whether the impeachment proceedings would continue after Biden’s inauguration, or whether Washington, DC or other states would take their own legal action.
Representative Jerry Nadler, a Democrat from New York and chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary, said he was in favor of “bringing articles of impeachment directly to the House floor.”
“I insist once again that the president be impeached and removed from office,” Nadler tweeted Thursday evening. “We have limited time to act. The nation cannot afford a lengthy, lengthy process.”
What does it take to depose a sitting president?
A president, along with other officials, can be charged with “treason, bribery or other serious crimes and offenses,” according to section 4 of Article 2 of the United States Constitution.
A total of 216 votes from the House of Representatives are required to impeach – a simple majority plus one. Subsequently, a trial takes place in the Senate, where the American Chief Justice is chairman. A full two-thirds of the 100 senators must vote to impeach.
If the Senate were to condemn Trump, it would not only remove him from the White House once the vote took place, but it would also prevent him from ever running for a second presidential term.
What’s the Difference Between Impeachment and the 25th Amendment?
Congress – including Republican representatives – has also urged Vice President Mike Pence to remove the. Unlike impeachment, voted on by Congress, the 25th Amendment would require Pence and a majority of sitting cabinet secretaries to invoke power. Alternatively, it can also be invoked by the vice president and another body designated by Congress.
To be able to do this, Pence and a majority of sitting cabinet secretaries must decide that a sitting president is unfit for office. Several cabinet members have since resigned.
Pence has reportedly said he will not invoke the 25th Amendment.
“The president of the United States has provoked an armed uprising against America,” house speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a press conference on Thursday. By calling for this inciting act, the President has made an unspeakable attack on our nation and our people. to do on the 25th amendment. “
Read more: 25th Amendment: What It Is, How It Would Remove Trump From Power If Invoked
Congress confirmed the victory of Biden and Vice-President-elect Kamala Harris in the 2020 election in the early hours of Thursday after they reconvened Wednesday night following their evacuation from the Capitol. Trump later turned out.
In a video released Thursday night,. “A new government will be inaugurated on January 20,” Trump said. My focus now is on ensuring a smooth, orderly and seamless transfer of power. “
Why Democrats push for impeachment
Pelosi summed up her party’s position: “The president’s dangerous and inflammatory acts require his immediate resignation,” she said Thursday.
Minnesota Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar tweeted Wednesday afternoon that she was drafting articles of impeachment while being evacuated by Congress during the uprising. “Donald J. Trump should be impeached by the House of Representatives and removed from office by the United States Senate,” Omar tweeted at the time. “We can’t keep him in office, it’s a matter of maintaining our republic.”
Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. ET, more than 20 Democratic congressmen had joined the calls for Trump’s impeachment.
Omar tweeted the articles of impeachment circulating by the House Democrats around noon ET Thursday. She sponsors the resolution to remove Trump from office, with co-leaders Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Cori Bush, Mondaire Jones, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, Veronica Escobar, Jamal Bowman, Ted Lieu, Hank Johnson, Al Green, and David Cicilline .
Urging Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, Pelosi said Congress could otherwise proceed with impeachment.
He called Trump “a complete instrument of Putin” and said it would be “very dangerous” for him to remain in office until the inauguration. “Although there are only 13 days left, any day can be a horror show for America,” she said.
According to CNN Friday, the impeachment now has 131 co-sponsors. Omar tweeted to thank “the hundreds of members” who heard Americans’ calls for impeachment. With Pence seemingly reluctant to invoke the 25th Amendment, Pelosi said on Friday that she will now impeach if Trump does not resign.
House Democrats meet on Friday afternoon to discuss impeachment. “Our House Dem Caucus is MEETING NOW to discuss the 25th Amendment, Impeachment and other immediate actions,” tweeted Rep. Jared Huffman Friday at 3 p.m. ET. “This is an emergency and we are not waiting to act.”
Some Republicans are also pushing for impeachment
Multiple GOP leaders reiterated calls for impeachment, or for Vice President Mike Pence and the cabinet.
In a video posted on Twitter during the early hours of the uprising, Wisconsin Republican Representative Mike Gallagher compared the uprising to actions seen in so-called ‘banana republics’. Senator Mitt Romney, a Republican from Utah, later went to the room to denounce Trump’s encouragement to the crowd.
House Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney accused the president of “abusing the trust of the people who supported him,” while GOP Rep. Illinois’ Adam Kinzinger and Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton demanded that Trump acknowledge his election loss. Former President George W. Bush, the last living Republican president, released a statement calling the violence “sickening.”
Republican Senator Ben Sasse told CBS News on Friday that he would “certainly consider” the impeachment articles if the House votes to impeach.
Despite the support of some members of the Republican Congress, the Senate currently still has a Republican majority. Newly elected Georgian Democratic Senators Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock have yet to be sworn in, as is elected Vice President Kamala Harris, who would serve as a tiebreaker should the issue arise. Although Harris will be sworn in as vice president on Jan. 20, Georgia has yet to approve the results and Congress has already been convened without Warnock and Ossoff.
Wasn’t Trump already impeached?
Yes. Trump was previously impeached by the House in December 2019. The Republican Majority– with the process marked by of Trump who belittles the impeachment trial.
His previous impeachment included two articles accusing Trump of abuse of power and obstructing Congress. The occasion involved Trump’s dealings with Ukraine, including a phone call in July 2019 appearing to ask that country to investigate links between Joe Biden, his son Hunter Biden and a Ukrainian gas company.
CNET’s Rae Hodge and Jessica Dolcourt contributed to this report.