US President Donald Trump became the first president in the country’s history to be impeached twice when the US House of Representatives voted on Wednesday to charge him with inciting last week’s mob attack on the US Congress.
“Today, in a bipartisan way, the House demonstrated that no one is above the law, not even the president of the United States,” US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said after the vote.
The US Senate would not hold a trial before Wednesday next week, when US president-elect Joe Biden is to be inaugurated, meaning that Trump is to escape the ignominy of being forced to leave office early.
However, he is set to face a Senate trial later and if convicted he might be barred in a follow-up vote from seeking the US presidency again in 2024.
“Donald Trump has deservedly become the first president in American history to bear the stain of impeachment twice over,” said US Senator Chuck Schumer, who in a week’s time is to become Senate leader. “The Senate is required to act and will proceed with his trial.”
In the House, 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 No. 3 in the House, US Representative Liz Cheney.
“I am in total peace today that my vote was the right thing and I actually think history will judge it that way,” said Adam Kinzinger, a vocal Trump critic and one of the Republicans who crossed the aisle.
In the White House, Trump issued a videotaped address in which he made no mention of impeachment or his attempts to persuade half of the country into believing that Biden’s victory was fraudulent.
Instead, the comments focused on an appeal for Americans to be “united,” avoid violence and “overcome the passions of the moment.”
Biden called Wednesday’s decision by US representatives “a bipartisan vote cast by members who followed the constitution and their conscience.”
Biden, who inherits the COVID-19 pandemic and an ailing economy amid other woes, urged the Senate to address his priorities, such as approving Cabinet nominations, while also dealing with Trump’s trial.
“I hope that the Senate leadership will find a way to deal with their constituional responsibilities on impeachment, while also working on the other urgent business of this nation,” Biden said in a statement.
Trump’s downfall was triggered by a speech he delivered to a crowd on the National Mall on Wednesday last week, telling them that Biden had stolen the presidential election and that they needed to march “peacefully” on Congress and show “strength.”
Pelosi told the chamber before the vote that Trump “must go.”
“He is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love,” she said.
INCURSION: After 13 PLA aircraft flew into Taiwan’s ADIZ, the US Department of State said that China should rather ‘engage in meaningful dialogue’ with Taiwan US President Joe Biden’s administration on Saturday urged China to stop placing military pressure on Taiwan, while calling on both sides of the Taiwan Strait to engage in peaceful dialogue. The statement by the US Department of State was issued after 13 Chinese military aircraft flew into Taiwan’s southwest air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Saturday, the highest number observed in a single day this year, the Ministry of National Defense said. The air force scrambled fighter jets to monitor the Chinese aircraft, issuing radio warnings and mobilizing air defense assets until the planes left the ADIZ. The US “notes
‘INCREASED VIGILANCE’: A source of infection has not yet been found for the latest two cases in a hospital cluster, which should serve as a warning, Chen Shih-chung said A total of 2,991 people associated with a COVID-19 cluster infection at Taoyuan General Hospital have been put under home isolation, after an emergency expanded isolation order was issued on Sunday evening, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday. Fifteen people have so far tested positive in the cluster infection. The first case in the cluster (case No. 838) was reported on Jan. 12 — a doctor who treated an infected patient who had returned from the US. Contact tracing for the first 13 cases found connections to case No. 838, said Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who
CHANGE OF GUARD: Hsiao Bi-khim’s attendance at Joe Biden’s inauguration will come as a boost to those in Taiwan who feared that the new US administration would be less friendly than that of Donald Trump to the nation Representative to the US Hsiao Bi-khim (蕭美琴) is to attend US President Joe Biden’s swearing-in ceremony at the US Capitol after she was invited by the US Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, a news release issued by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) in the US said last night. The news came as a surprise as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had been reticent about the matter, while Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) members had accused the Democratic Progressive Party administration of hedging its bets on the Republican Party. Asked about when Hsiao received the invitation, the ministry did not
FAMILY UNIT: The CECC warned that the eldest sister of the latest case, who also has COVID-19, visited Taoyuan’s Chungping evening market on Tuesday and Wednesday The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported a domestic case of COVID-19, associated with a recent cluster infection at Taoyuan General Hospital, and two imported cases. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that the latest case (No. 885) is a woman in her 50s, who is the third daughter of case No. 881, a man in his 90s. The woman is the main caregiver of her elderly father, who had been hospitalized earlier this month and was treated by a nurse (case No. 852) from Monday to Thursday last week, he said, adding that