WASHINGTON - A Democratic congresswoman on Wednesday said she was drawing up articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump after mobs broke into the U.S. Capitol following Trump's urgings to his supporters to fight to undo his election loss.
"We can’t allow him to remain in office, it’s a matter of preserving our Republic and we need to fulfill our oath," U.S. Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota wrote on Twitter even though there are just two weeks left before President-elect Joe Biden takes office.
Hundreds of protesters marched from a Trump rally in front of the White House to the Capitol and stormed the building. Video showed people breaking windows to get inside. Lawmakers from the Senate and the House of Representatives were evacuated as they met to confirm Biden's victory in the Nov. 3 election.
Calls for impeachment spread rapidly across social media from Democratic lawmakers, commentators and some of Trump's fellow Republicans.
"Inciting a coup has to warrant impeachment," NAACP Chairman Leon Russell wrote on Twitter. Russell, among others, also urged Trump's cabinet to initiate the 25th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which transfers power to the vice president if the president becomes unable to do his job.
New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell needed to lead a delegation of Republican leaders to the White House "to tell Trump that he has to resign immediately - or they will join with Democrats and impeach him."
Some Republican lawmakers tried a last-ditch effort to challenge the election results, encouraged by Trump with his unfounded claims of voter fraud.
Trump's former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci told Reuters via text: "Donald Trump and elected officials need to be impeached and removed from office. They have damaged our standing in the international community and are now threatening our way of life."
Trump was acquitted in February 2020 by the Republican-controlled Senate after an impeachment trial led by the Democratic-controlled House on charges of trying to pressure Ukraine to investigate Biden and his son Hunter Biden. (Reporting by Andrea Shalal; additional reporting by Heather Timmons and Svea Herbst-Bayliss; editing by Grant McCool)