Donald Trump’s impeachment Wednesday confirmed that “no one is above the law,” US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said after the defiant Republican president was impeached for the second time in 13 months.
“Today in a bipartisan way the House demonstrated that no one is above the law, not even the president of the United States,” the top Democrat in Congress said at a ceremony at which she signed the article of impeachment.
Trump, 74, was impeached for “incitement of insurrection” after he exhorted his supporters to march on the US Capitol and “fight,” leading to a mob storming the seat of American democracy.
He became the first US president in history to be impeached twice when the House of Representatives voted Wednesday to charge him with inciting last week’s mob attack on Congress.
The Senate will not hold a trial before January 20, when Democrat Joe Biden assumes the presidency, meaning the real estate tycoon will escape the risk of being forced to leave early.
He will, however, depart in disgrace and face a Senate trial later — and if convicted would likely be barred in a follow-up vote from seeking the presidency again in 2024.
“Donald Trump has deservedly become the first president in American history to bear the stain of impeachment twice over,” said Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer, who in a week’s time will become Senate leader.
“The Senate is required to act and will proceed with his trial.”
In the House of Representatives, the only question was how many Republicans would join the lockstep Democratic majority in the 232-197 vote. At the final count, 10 Republicans broke ranks, including the party’s number three in the House, Representative Liz Cheney.