WASHINGTON: Democrats say the House will consider the impeachment of President Donald Trump on Wednesday, one week after an angry mob of his supporters invaded the Capitol.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told Democrats on a call on Monday that members should plan to return to Washington on Tuesday evening to consider a House resolution calling on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke constitutional authority to remove Trump from office.
That resolution is expected to pass, but Pence is unlikely to act.
Hoyer says the House will then consider impeachment on Wednesday.
House Democrats have moved quickly to draft an article of impeachment charging Trump with incitement of insurrection because he egged on thousands of his supporters ahead of the riots by falsely telling them that the election was stolen from him.
One of the Democratic sponsors of the article, Rhode Island Representative David Cicilline, says they have the votes to pass it.
Meanwhile, President-elect Joe Biden has urged the US Congressional leadership on Monday to bifurcate the process to impeach outgoing President Donald Trump and confirmation of his nominees.
Biden told reporters at a news conference on Monday that his priority was to get first and foremost a stimulus bill passed and secondly to begin to rebuild the economy.
He plans to make a detailed announcement in this regard on Thursday.
“I had a discussion today with some folks in the House (and) in the Senate,” Biden said.
“Can we go a half day on dealing with the impeachment and half a day getting my people nominated and confirmed in the Senate, as well as moving on the package?” “So that is my hope and expectation,” he said.
The president-elect added that he had not received an answer from the lawmakers yet.
Responding to a question, Biden said he was not afraid of holding inauguration outside.
“We have been getting briefed, but I think it’s critically important that there be a real serious focus on holding those folks who engaged in sedition and threatened peoples’ lives, defaced public property, caused great damage that they be held accountable, Biden said.
“And I think that is a view that is held by the vast majority of Democrats and Republicans in the Congress.”
On the other hand, Trump and Vice President Mike Pence have spoken for the first time since last week’s Capitol insurrection, during which Pence was forced to flee the Senate chamber and retreat to a secure location.
A senior administration official says the two met on Monday evening in the Oval Office.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the private meeting, said the two had a “good conversation”, discussing the week ahead and “reflecting” on the administrations accomplishments over the last four years.
The official said that during the meeting, both men agreed that “those who broke the law and stormed the Capitol last week do not represent the America first movement backed by 75 million Americans” and pledged to continue working on behalf of the country for the remainder of their term.
The person did not mention Trump’s lingering anger over Pence’s refusal to go along with his unconstitutional scheme to try to overturn the results of the November election that he lost.
Nor did the person mention whether Pence confronted Trump for using him as a scapegoat and tweeting that he lacked courage while the siege was underway.