17:47 GMT20 January 2021
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    On January 13, the US House of Representatives voted to impeach the incumbent US president, Donald Trump, for a second time, accusing him of "incitement to violence". The accusations follow widespread claims that Trump is largely responsible for the deadly 6 January violence at the US capitol building.

    Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) tweeted Wednesday that Trump would step down from the White House next week, and suggested that further impeachment proceedings in the US Capitol may inspire additional social unrest.

    Graham, known to be a Trump supporter, earlier stated that impeachment is not “appropriate at this point" as it could cause “great damage” to the GOP and “become a threat to future presidents."

    "The House impeachment process seeks to legitimize a snap impeachment totally void of due process. No hearings. No witnesses. It is a rushed process that, over time, will become a threat to future presidents,” he said.

    On Wednesday, 232 Representatives, including ten Republicans and the entire Democratic bloc, voted to impeach Trump a second time, while 197 voted against. Democrats, lawmakers and mainstream US media have repeatedly accused Trump of inciting supporters to a deadly 6 January attack that resulted in the storming of the Capitol building and five deaths, including a law enforcement officer who was beaten to death by a mob of Trump supporters seeking to overturn the 2020 election results.

    The impeachment resolution, after being signed by the Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, is now on its way to the Senate. According to presumptive Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, the trial could start immediately if the current majority leader, Mitch McConnell, agrees to reconvene for an emergency session.

    McConnell, however, stated that the process would only begin "at the first regular meeting” and no final verdict would be made before the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden on 20 January.

    "Even if the Senate process were to begin this week and move promptly, no final verdict would be reached until after President Trump had left office,” he stated.

    In December 2019, Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives for the first time, on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, in particular, for forcing the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to initiate an investigation against Hunter Biden, the son of the then-Democratic presidential candidate, Joe Biden. The US Senate on 5 February 2020 voted to allow Trump to retain the presidency.


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