The United States House of Representatives on Wednesday afternoon voted to impeach President Donald John Trump for “incitement of insurrection.”
Trump became the first president in history to be impeached on two separate occasions. He was impeached in December 2019 on two articles of impeachment and then acquitted by the Senate in early 2020.
Wednesday’s vote was 232-197, with 10 Republicans voting to support impeachment.
Alabama’s only member of the House voting to impeach the president is also the state’s only Democrat in the chamber, U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell (AL-07). She was also a cosponsor of the impeachment resolution.
The six Republican congressmen from the Yellowhammer State voted against impeachment.
The article of impeachment charges Trump with engaging “in high Crimes and Misdemeanors by willfully inciting violence against the Government of the United States.” This refers to his speech last Wednesday that preceded rioting at the U.S. Capitol.
The Senate will not be back in session until January 19, meaning a Senate impeachment trial will very likely occur after Trump has left office.
U.S. Rep. Robert Aderholt (AL-04) said in a statement, “The storming of the United States Capitol was an American tragedy. As someone who was in the chamber of the House of Representatives that day, I can tell you it was a dark day in American history. The actions of those who broke into the building are unacceptable and undefendable. As I stated last week, our goal now should be on unifying our nation and to prayerfully seek answers to our nation’s problems.”
“While I understand Democrats wanting to express their anger in the form of impeachment, the act, which is more symbolic than actionable, causes more division and does not advance unity or healing,” he continued. “The United States Senate leader has stated that the Senate will not be able to even begin a trial until after President Trump has already left office next week.
“I believe that it would be in the best interest of all Americans for us to focus on cooling tensions, finding common ground and praying for this nation as we face so many challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic. In all sincerity, I do not believe that the impeachment today does anything to move our great constitutional republic forward,” Aderholt advised.
U.S. Rep. Jerry Carl (AL-01) also released a statement right after Wednesday’s vote.
“Today House Democrats moved forward with a vote to impeach President Trump,” the freshman congressman from Coastal Alabama stated. “I voted no because the reasons cited in these articles failed to reach the necessary threshold for impeachment. Furthermore, the President has publicly conceded the election and committed to a peaceful transition of power, and I trust he will uphold his promise to ensure a smooth transition to the next administration. With only a few days left until January 20th, impeachment would further divide the American people when unity is needed. I remain committed to doing the job I was elected to do, rather than wasting time on Nancy Pelosi’s personal vendetta against President Trump.”
UPDATE 5:15 p.m.
U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks (AL-05), himself facing a censure resolution for a speech he delivered before Trump’s remarks last Wednesday, released a statement, saying, “For the second time in as many years, House Socialists who are panicking from almost losing the House in the 2020 elections foist a sham impeachment on the American people, a mere 7 days before President Trump is set to leave office. The Socialists seek to sully the President’s reputation and tarnish his legacy with baseless claims that he incited January 6th Capitol violence despite ZERO evidence. Their arguments are bunk. They paid NO attention to President Trump expressly asking American citizens to “peacefully” exercise their protest rights. Socialists also ignore growing evidence that militant groups coordinated and incited the illegal breach of the Capitol and would have done so regardless of what President Trump said at a rally 1 1/2 miles away.”
“My message to Socialists: Try being truthful, honest and honorable for a change. Do some homework. Actually read the President’s speech transcript,” he concluded. “Where in his speech did President Trump instruct anyone to commit violent acts? It is not there. American citizens have an absolute right under the Constitution’s First Amendment to engage in free speech and to assemble, protest, and petition their Congress. I am proud of those patriots who lawfully exercised their rights in hopes of helping to bring about more honest and accurate elections that are the underpinning of any republic. I hope those who engaged in illegal activity inside the Capitol are punished to the fullest extent of the law.”
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn