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Second impeachment marks Trump’s final days as president

January 18, 2021

The presidency of Donald Trump will end at noon on Wednesday, January 20, when Joe Biden is inaugurated as the 46th president of the United States, following a tumultuous several weeks.

The U.S. House of Representatives voted 232-197 to impeach President Trump for a second time on Jan. 13.

The U.S. House of Representatives voted 232-197 to impeach President Trump for a second time on Jan. 13.

Getty Images / Chip Somodevilla

On Jan.6, as Congress was counting the Electoral College votes to affirm that Biden had won the Nov. 3 presidential election, a mob marched from a rally hosted by Trump to the U.S. Capitol, where hundreds of rioters broke into the building injuring dozens of people and resulting in five deaths.

A week later, on Jan. 13, the House of Representatives voted 232-197 to impeach Trump for the second time, the first time in history a president has been impeached twice. The House charged Trump with high crimes and misdemeanors for inciting an insurrection. “He threatened the integrity of the democratic system, interfered with the peaceful transition of power, and imperiled a coequal branch of Government,” the charging document read.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said the Senate would not start an impeachment trial until “our first regular meeting following receipt of the article from the House,” which would be Tuesday, Jan. 19. That means the impeachment proceedings will be held during Biden’s term after the Democrats take control of the Senate, which will occur after the Georgia Senate runoff elections are certified by Jan. 22 at the latest.

President Trump was first impeached in December 2019 on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress stemming from a phone call he made to the president of Ukraine asking him to launch an investigation into Biden and his son, Hunter. Trump was acquitted by the Senate of both charges (48-52 on abuse of power and 47-53 on obstruction of Congress) with only one Republican, Mitt Romney, voting to convict on abuse of power. For the current impeachment, 17 Republicans along with all 50 Democrats would have to vote to convict.

Only one House Republican voted for impeachment in 2019. This time, 10 House Republicans voted to impeach — the most bipartisan impeachment in history.

No U.S. president ever has been removed from office through impeachment. Andrew Johnson (1869), Bill Clinton (1998) and Trump (2019) were the only three to be impeached by the House.

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