Democrats introduce new article of impeachment, claim Trump ‘incited’ an ‘insurrection’
WASHINGTON, D.C., January 11, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) – Congressional Democrats are moving forward with a last-minute article of impeachment against President Donald Trump, hoping to bar him from a future candidacy less than two weeks before his term of office expires.
Scores of protesters broke into the US Capitol Building last week, following the “March to Save America” rally where the president said supporters would march “over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard,” where “we're going to cheer on our brave senators and congressmen-and-women” who were meeting to formally object to the certification of electoral votes from a handful of states.
As covered live by LifeSiteNews, viral videos showed groups of protesters engaging in physical altercations with police, pushing against security barricades, breaking through a window, trespassing in congressional offices, and climbing on walls, causing the vote certification to be suspended and lawmakers to be evacuated from the chambers. While many were allowed to enter by police and simply walked through the building (which is normally open to the public) after the initial breach, there were several deaths, including a protester shot by Capitol Hill police, a protestor trampled amid the chaos, a police officer whose death is being investigated as a potential murder, and several due to unspecified “medical emergencies.”
Trump told the breachers to “go home in peace” via tweets and video message, yet a coalition of Democrats and establishment Republicans quickly decided that Trump had “incited” the violence, some by blaming his support of marching to the building (which was a pre-planned part of the event, advertised prior to Trump’s remarks), others by blaming Trump’s refusal to concede in the first place.
Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi threatened Sunday to move forward with impeachment if Vice President Mike Pence did not back removing Trump via the 25th Amendment (a process meant to replace a president incapacitated by medical emergencies, not for conduct his opponents deem outrageous or dangerous), and on Monday House Democrats unveiled the official resolution for “incitement of insurrection.”
“In the months preceding the Joint Session [to count the electoral votes of the 2020 presidential election], President Trump repeatedly issued false statements asserting that the Presidential election results were the product of widespread fraud and should not be accepted by the American people or certified by State or Federal officials,” the article reads. “Shortly before the Joint Session commenced, President Trump, addressed a crowd at the Ellipse in Washington, DC.”
“There, he reiterated false claims that ‘we won this election, and we won it by a landslide,’” the article continues. “He also willfully made statements that, in context, encouraged—and foreseeably resulted in—lawless action at the Capitol, such as: ‘if you don’t fight like hell you’re not going to have a country anymore’. Thus incited by President Trump, members of the crowd he had addressed, in an attempt to, among other objectives, interfere with the Joint Session’s solemn constitutional duty to certify the results of the 2020 Presidential election, unlawfully breached and vandalized the Capitol, injured and killed law enforcement personnel, menaced Members of Congress, the Vice President, and Congressional personnel, and engaged in other violent, deadly, destructive, and seditious acts.”
The article does not cite any examples of Trump advocating, encouraging, or implying violence; the closest substitute is Trump’s use of the word “fight,” which is ubiquitous among political rhetoric and is virtually never interpreted as a call to physical conflict.
Further, over the weekend Andrew Egger, a reporter with vehemently “NeverTrump” publication The Dispatch, acknowledged that the violence appeared to be instigated by people who either skipped Trump’s speech or left it early, who took matters into their own hands because they found Trump’s speech too passive and ineffectual.
While a successful impeachment’s only short-term effect would be to remove Trump from office a few days ahead of schedule, in the long term it would also disqualify him from seeking and holding public office in the future. It is doubtful that enough Republicans would join Democrats to make it happen, however, and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has come out against the impeachment push as a stunt that “will destroy the country even further.”
“Pick up the phone, call Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and the squad and tell them ‘stand down,’” Graham implored incoming President Joe Biden in an interview with Fox News’s Sean Hannity. “Joe Biden said it’s up to Congress regarding impeachment. No, President-elect Biden, it’s up to you.”