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LIVE: House majority leader Steny Hoyer rips into GOP Rep. Jim Jordan for being ‘Trump-like’ and denying reality as House considers impeachment

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  • The House of Representatives is poised to impeach President Donald Trump for the second time for “incitement of insurrection” following last week’s deadly Capitol siege.
  • Debate over the article of impeachment began shortly after 9 a.m. ET and can be watched online on C-SPAN, YouTube, and the House’s official website.
  • Scroll down to watch the livestream and follow Insider’s live coverage of the historic event.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The House of Representatives is poised on Wednesday to impeach President Donald Trump for the second time after he incited a deadly riot at the US Capitol that resulted in five deaths and multiple injuries.

With just a week left in his term, the president is facing an unprecedented level of legal and political risk after he whipped thousands of his supporters into a frenzy at a rally on January 6 and then urged them to march to the Capitol to stop Congress from formalizing President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 election.

The pro-Trump mob went on to lay siege to the Capitol, swarming the building, ransacking offices, stealing and vandalizing property, and trying to hunt down Vice President Mike Pence and other lawmakers.

In the wake of the failed insurrection, a slew of Republicans finally broke ranks with the president as congressional Democrats called for his impeachment. If he is impeached Wednesday, as is widely expected, Trump will be the only president to have been impeached twice.

Watch the proceedings below:

Scroll down for live updates and key moments:

House majority leader Steny Hoyer tears into Jim Jordan for being ‘Trump-like’ and denying reality

steny hoyer
Steny Hoyer.

House majority leader Steny Hoyer gave a fiery speech on the floor in which he highlighted the statements from three Republican lawmakers who have so far come out in favor of impeachment: Reps. John Katko, Liz Cheney, and Adam Kinzinger.

And then Hoyer turned his sights to Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, a longtime conservative and one of Trump’s most loyal attack dogs on Capitol Hill.

“I see that the gentleman from Ohio is on the floor,” Hoyer said. “He likes to say that we Democrats were elected and the first thing we wanted to do was impeach this president. And he’s shaking his head in agreement because like the president of the United States, he denies the facts. Trump-like. Fake news.”

The Maryland Democrat went on to point out that in 2017, 2018, and early 2019, Democrats repeatedly voted to table motions to impeach the president. He said that even though some Democrats shared the view that Trump was dangerous, they were not confident that a solid case could be made.

“There was no rush to judgment,” Hoyer said.

“The reason I rise today … is to recognize the contributions that Al Greene of Texas has made to getting us to this place,” Hoyer said, referring to the Democratic lawmaker who brought forward multiple impeachment resolutions that were tabled before Trump was first impeached in late 2019.

“Is there little time left? Yes. But it is never too late to do the right thing,” Hoyer said.

Republicans call for unity while Democrats call for accountability

nancy pelosi
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi sanitizes the gavel after Vice President Mike Pence walked off the dais during a joint session of Congress to certify the 2020 Electoral College results on January 6, 2021 in Washington, DC.

After the House convened on Wednesday, an immediate theme emerged: Republicans argued against impeachment, saying it would be too “divisive” and that the country needed “unity.” And Democrats demanded accountability.

“We need to recognize we are following a flawed process,” said GOP Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma. “We need to recognize that while the House may be done with this matter after today’s vote, it will not be done for the country, it will not be done for the Senate, and it will not be done for the incoming Biden administration. The House’s action today will only extend the division longer than necessary.”

Democrats struck a different chord, with Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts saying in his floor speech, “Every moment Donald Trump is in the White House, our nation and our freedom is in danger. He must be held to account for the attack on our Capitol that he organized and he incited.”

“The damage this building sustained can be repaired,” he added, “but if we don’t hold DOnald Trump accountable, the damage done to our nation could be irreversible.” 

National Guard troops were seen sleeping in the halls of the Capitol as the House convened

national guard capitol
Members of the National Guard walk through the Rotunda of the US Capitol in Washington, DC, January 13, 2021, ahead of an expected House vote impeaching US President Donald Trump.

As the government grapples with the chaos that gripped the Capitol last week, thousands of National Guard troops were deployed to Washington, DC, to protect the Capitol and President-elect Joe Biden leading up to Inauguration Day.

On Wednesday, as the House convened to consider impeaching the president and as violent Trump supporters continue threatening lawmakers online, one CNN producer posted photos on Twitter showing scores of troops sleeping in the hallways of the Capitol.

 

Pence refused to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove Trump from office

Mike Pence Donald Trump
President Donald Trump listens as Vice President Mike Pence speaks at a coronavirus briefing in February 2020.

The House passed a resolution late Tuesday calling on Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove the president from office. The resolution said that if Pence did not act within 24 hours, the House would move forward with impeachment.

Pence sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi before the resolution was passed indicating that he would not take that drastic step because he believed it would be unconstitutional and divisive.

FBI and Justice Department are focusing on ‘significant felony cases tied to sedition and conspiracy’ after the riot

capitol siege riot ladder
Rioters clash with police using big ladder trying to enter Capitol building through the front doors.

FBI and Justice Department officials said Tuesday that the “scope and scale” of criminal conduct they’re investigating from the rioters is “unprecedented.”

The acting US attorney in Washington, DC, said investigators are focusing on “significant felony cases tied to sedition and conspiracy” in the wake of the siege.

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