Donald Trump will face another impeachment trial, it has been confirmed (Picture: Getty /EPA)
Donald Trump has become the first US President to be impeached twice, after the House of Representatives voted to charge him with incitement of insurrection.
He was first impeached in December 2019 on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, over allegations he’d sought help from Ukraine to boost his chances of winning the election.
The Senate acquitted the President of the two charges in February last year, but he was impeached a second time after a mob of his supporters sieged the Capitol during the confirmation of electoral college votes on January 6.
The rioters took action after attending a rally in which Trump told them to ‘walk down to the Capitol’ and added: ‘If you don’t fight like hell you’re not going to have a country anymore.’ He then later refused to condemn the rioters in a video telling them to go home.
Numerous politicians blamed Trump for the attack, and Democratic officials drew up plans for impeachment, at first seeking Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th amendment and remove him from office.
Trump was then charged with ‘incitement of insurrection’ on Wednesday evening. It has been suggested by Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell that the trial could take place as early as January 19, although this has not been confirmed.
The trial could dominate the first weeks of Biden’s presidency if it goes ahead in January (Picture: Metro.co.uk)
Biden is due to take office on January 20, meaning the trial could dominate the first weeks of his presidency. The Senate will need a majority of two-thirds for the conviction to be successful.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has already named nine ‘impeachment managers’, who would present the House’s case for impeachment during the trial. She said of Trump: ‘He must go, he is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love.’
But some members have called for the process to be delayed for several months, which would allow the Senate to confirm Biden’s cabinet, through confirmation hearings.
The confirmation hearings of three cabinet nominations, Antony Blinken for Secretary of State, Janet Allen for Treasury Secretary and Lloyd Austin for Defense Secretary, are already set to be held on January 19.
Trump supporters broke into the capitol during the riot (Picture: Reuters)
The House of Representatives voted to charge Trump with incitement of insurrection (Picture: EPA)
Biden has so far steered clear of the impeachment process and left it up to Congress to decide when the proceedings should take place.
Once a date is settled on, the process will likely last for several months. The White House has criticised the charges in a statement, claiming that a ‘politically motivated impeachment against a president with 12 days remaining in his term will only serve to further divide our great country’.
If Trump is impeached, he could be barred from ever running for president again, as it is believed he plans to do in 2024. He could also lose his rights to receive a pension normally given to presidents after their time in office.
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