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U.S. House impeaches Trump for second time after Capitol siege

A barricade is seen near the U.S. Capitol building as the House of Representatives debates impeaching U.S. President Donald Trump a week after his supporters stormed the Capitol building in Washington, U.S., January 13, 2021. REUTERS/Brandon Bell

WASHINGTON Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday made Donald Trump the first U.S. president ever to be impeached twice, formally charging him with inciting an insurrection in a vote held a week after a violent mob of his supporters besieged the Capitol.

The Democratic-led House’s 232-197 passage of a single article of impeachment in a historic vote in the waning days of Trump’s four-year term in office does not remove him from office. Rather it moves the drama over his political fate to the Senate, which remains in the hands of Trump’s fellow Republicans for now but later this month will be under Democratic control.

Ten Republicans joined with the Democrats in backing impeachment in a vote held with National Guard forces and police protecting the Capitol, which was surrounded by a security fence erected after the deadly Jan. 6 rampage.

Furious after the siege, House Democrats, under the leadership of Speaker Nancy Pelosi, argued that leaving the wealthy businessman-turned-politician in office until his four-year term ends would pose a threat to national security, democracy and the U.S. Constitution. The pro-Trump mob interrupted the formal certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the Nov. 3 election. Biden is due to take office on Jan. 20.

Writing by Richard Cowan and Will Dunham

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