House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Sunday laid out the next steps in the bid to remove President Trump from office in the wake of the assault on the U.S. Capitol. The White House, meanwhile, saidto the U.S.-Mexico border on Tuesday and will resume official duties amid the firestorm.
Pelosi said Congress on Monday will move on a motion brought by Congressman Jamie Raskin that calls on Vice President Mike Pence to convene the Cabinet to invoke the 25th amendment to remove Mr. Trump from office. Pence will have 24 hours to respond.
If Pence does not respond, Pelosi said the House will proceed with articles of impeachment, which have been drafted but have not yet been introduced.
, Pelosi said although there are “only a number of days until we can be protected from” Mr. Trump, “he has done something so serious that there should be prosecution against him.”
Democrats have a thin majority in the House, so impeachment could succeed without any Republicans. On Sunday, two moderate Democrats, including one who is the co-chair of the Blue Dog Coalition, came out in favor of impeachment. In 2019, nearly all Democrats voted for impeachment, along with former independent Congressman Justin Amash. But for Mr. Trump to be removed from office, he would need to be convicted by 67 senators. Republicans will hold onto the majority in the Senate until Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock are sworn in.
Once the Senate receives articles of impeachment, it is required to consider them before acting on any other business. If the Senate is required to hold impeachment hearings, they will monopolize the calendar at a time when hearings should be held for President-elect Joe Biden’s crucial Cabinet picks.
There’s already a confirmation hearing scheduled for Mr. Biden’s pick to lead the Defense Department, retired General Lloyd Austin, on January 19, the day before inauguration. That would potentially be delayed. The Senate would also have to delay a vote on a waiver to allow him to serve as defense secretary, which he would need given his recent departure from the military.
Congressman Jim Clyburn on Sunday floated the possibility of impeaching Mr. Trump after he leaves office on January 20. Clyburn suggested they could impeach him after Mr. Biden’s first 100 days in office, which would give Mr. Biden time to enact some of his agenda before a trial.
Impeaching and convicting Mr. Trump after he leaves office would bar him from holding office in the future.