International

Second impeachment looms after Pence rejects call to remove Trump

US Vice President Mike Pence rejected calls from lawmakers to use the 25th amendment of the US Constitution to remove Donald Trump from office on Tuesday, dpa news said.

On Tuesday night, the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives approved a resolution calling on Pence to invoke the amendment, which would seek to remove Trump from office by declaring him unfit to perform his duties.

Ahead of the House vote, Pence dismissed the Democratic effort as “political games,” even as he condemned the riots that overtook the Capitol last week and sparked the moves by lawmakers against Trump.

“Under our Constitution the 25th Amendment is not a means of punishment or usurpation,” Pence said. “Invoking the 25th Amendment in such a manner would set a terrible precedent.”

With Pence’s refusal to remove Trump, lawmakers will now turn to impeachment.

They are expected to vote to impeach the president on Wednesday for “inciting an insurrection at the Capitol in an attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 Presidential Election,” according to an impeachment document released by House Judiciary Committee.

“President Trump remains a clear and present danger to the Constitution and our democracy,” the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee said.

Meanwhile, in his first public comments since the the US Capitol was ransacked, Trump said that his speech inciting supporters before they stormed the US Capitol was “totally appropriate.”

“If you read my speech, and many people have done it … It’s been analysed and people thought that what I said was totally appropriate,” he said from the White House lawn.

The Republican took no responsibility when asked what his role was in the assault on Congress, which left five people dead, including a police officer.

The article of impeachment accuses Trump of stoking violence against the US government after the mob of loyalists, riled up by his claims of election fraud, broke into the Capitol building.