The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, will send the Senate next Monday the formal accusation of “incitement to insurrection” against former President Donald Trump for the violent assault on the Capitol on January 6. The transfer to the Upper House of the imputation -the article of the impeachment- launches an unprecedented political trial in the United States: it is the second against the same leader and will also take place with him already outside the White House. Two days after the inauguration of the new president, Joe Biden, Washington resumes the process against his predecessor.
“Make no mistake, there will be a trial and when the trial is over the senators will have to decide if they believe that Trump incited the insurrection against the United States,” said the leader of the Senate Democrats, Chuck Schumer, this Friday on Capitol Hill. Many Republicans argue that it no longer makes sense to go ahead with the process, given the end of the businessman’s presidency and the call for unity from his Democratic successor. Others, like the powerful Mitch McConnell, party leader in the Upper House, advocated a postponement in order to give Trump more time to prepare his defense. McConnell himself collaborated little with her last Tuesday, when in the middle of the session he pointed out that “the mob [que invadió el Congreso] it was fed with lies ”and“ was provoked by the president and other people with power ”.
The House of Representatives voted in favor of trying Trump on January 13, just a week after the ill-fated episode. That January 6, the same day that Congress was to certify Joe Biden’s electoral victory in the presidential elections, the last procedure before the inauguration, a crowd of followers of the still president violently invaded the Capitol to boycott the session with the hoax. of electoral fraud as an argument. Five people died. That same morning, Trump himself had encouraged them to march to the Capitol and protest. Without admitting defeat at the polls, he had spent months waving the specter of fraud.
Now the case goes to the Senate, which is where the trial itself is held and the verdict is voted. In the lower house, the impeachment went ahead with the Democratic majority and the support of 10 Republican congressmen. Now, in the upper house, the verdict will require a two-thirds vote, that is, 67 of the 100 senators. Democrats and Republicans are even, 50-50, which means, de facto, control for Democrats, because in the event of a tie, the vote of the country’s vice president, Kamala Harris, decides. But Trump’s conviction, which will result in a subsequent disqualification vote to prevent him from running again, would need the backing of 17 Republicans.
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