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Trump impeachment updates: McConnell says 'no chance' of Senate verdict before Biden inauguration

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The House of Representatives has voted to impeach President Donald Trump on the charge that he incited last week's mob attack against the U.S. Capitol that left five people dead, including a Capitol Police officer.

Trump is the only U.S. president whom the House impeached twice. Trump was impeached the first time in December 2019 for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress for his attempt to pressure Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden's family.

The Democratic-controlled House had moved rapidly to impeach Trump this week after Vice President Mike Pence rejected using the 25th Amendment to remove him from office. The House is now expected to immediately submit the article of impeachment, incitement to insurrection, to the Senate.

However, it's unclear when the Senate trial will take place. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's office has confirmed that he will not bring the upper chamber back before Tuesday, which means the trial will likely drag on past inauguration day and into President-elect Biden's first term.

Though the Republican-controlled Senate voted to acquit Trump during his first impeachment trial, the state of play is less clear this time around. Several GOP senators have called for Trump to step down, and McConnell himself has said he remains undecided on how he will vote.

Here's what you need to know:

President-elect Biden acknowledges House impeachment of President Trump

U.S. President-elect Joe Biden speaks to reporters following an online meeting with members of the National Governors Association (NGA) executive committee in Wilmington, Delaware, U.S., November 19, 2020.
Tom Brenner | Reuters

WASHINGTON — In a statement late Wednesday evening, President-elect Joe Biden acknowledged the House of Representatives vote to impeach President Donald Trump a second time for inciting last week's mob attack against the U.S. Capitol.

"This criminal attack was planned and coordinated. It was carried out by political extremists and domestic terrorists, who were incited to this violence by President Trump. It was an armed insurrection against the United States of America," Biden said of the riot that left five people dead, including a Capitol Police officer.

"Today, the members of the House of Representatives exercised the power granted to them under our Constitution and voted to impeach and hold the president accountable. It was a bipartisan vote cast by members who followed the Constitution and their conscience," Biden said, adding that the impeachment process will now move to the Senate. 

"I hope that the Senate leadership will find a way to deal with their Constitutional responsibilities on impeachment while also working on the other urgent business of this nation," Biden added in a carefully-worded statement that does not endorsee senators to convict Trump.

— Amanda Macias

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey admits the internet is controlled by too few companies

In a series of 13 tweets on Wednesday, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said that while banning Trump was a necessary move, it underscored some of the problems of the modern day internet. There has to be a better way than having private companies implementing inconsistent policies through a lack of transparency, he said, adding that Twitter and a side project called Bluesky are working to improve it.

Snapchat will terminate Trump’s account on Jan. 20

Snapchat will permanently terminate Donald Trump's account, the company announced Wednesday.

Snap had already suspended Trump's account in light of the Capitol riots last week. "In the interest of public safety, and based on his attempts to spread misinformation, hate speech, and incite violence, which are clear violations of our guidelines, we have made the decision to permanently terminate his account," a spokesman for the company said in a statement.

The company said the decision to terminate Trump's account was "in the best interest of our Snapchat community" for the long term.

Salvador Rodriguez

U.S. defense firms pause political action committee contributions after Capitol riot

B-1B Lancer
Senior Airman Scott Jackson | U.S. Air Force

WASHINGTON — America's largest defense companies are pausing their political action committee contributions on the heels of the violent protest at the U.S. Capitol.

Lockheed Martin, the world's largest arms manufacturer, wrote in a Wednesday evening statement that the company will halt funds in order to evaluate and update its contribution strategy.

"As we enter a new political cycle, we are not making political contributions as we continue this evaluation to ensure our political donation and engagement program remains aligned with our business priorities," the Bethesda-based firm wrote.

Leidos chairman and CEO Roger Krone called for the immediate pause of all political donations following the riot that rocked Washington.

"Violence, lawlessness, and anarchy have no place in our nation. We believe in civil political discourse and the fundamental right to peacefully protest, but strongly condemn violence or intimidation," Krone wrote.

"In light of these events, Leidos' Political Action Committee (PAC) has decided to temporarily pause all political donations. It's time to unite as one nation, promoting decency, understanding and a commitment to the common good. These are core American values and ones that Leidos will continue to honor each and every day," he added.

Raytheon, the world's largest missile manufacturer, also confirmed to CNBC that the firm paused all political action committee contributions "to reflect on the current environment and determine appropriate next steps."

A spokesman from Northrop Grumman wrote in a statement to CNBC that the defense giant was also pausing its funding and was "evaluating the way forward."

Huntington Ingalls Industries also wrote in a statement to CNBC that the political action committee "is currently paused while the firm's leadership reviews "the budget and any governance changes to possibly implement in the new cycle."

Aerospace giant Boeing and BAE Systems have also issued similar statements on pausing political action committee contributions. — Amanda Macias

Trump condemns violence at Capitol in video message as he faces Senate trial

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump on Wednesday condemned the deadly riot carried out by his supporters at the U.S. Capitol, shortly after he was impeached for the second time and as he faces a trial in the Senate that could prevent him from holding future office.

"No true supporter of mine could ever endorse political violence, no true supporter of mine could ever disrespect law enforcement or our great American flag. No true supporter of mine could ever threaten or harass their fellow Americans," the president said in a five-minute video message from the Oval Office.

"If you do any of these things, you are not supporting our movement, you are attacking it and you are attacking our country," he added.

Trump also said that over the past year, the nation has "seen too many riots, too many mobs, too many acts of intimidation and destruction."

"It must stop," he added.

Trump's address comes as federal authorities have not ruled out prosecuting Trump for inciting the mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol, resulting in at least five deaths, including that of a Capitol Police officer.

– Amanda Macias

Schumer says Trump will face fair impeachment trial in the Senate

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (L) and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer are seen during a joint session of Congress after they reconvened to certify the Electoral College votes of the 2020 presidential election in the House chamber in Washington, U.S. January 6, 2021.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer pledged a fair impeachment trial for President Donald Trump in a statement issued minutes after the House of Representatives voted to impeach the outgoing leader for an unprecedented second time.

"Now that the House of Representatives has acted, the Senate will hold a fair trial on the impeachment of Donald J. Trump for his role in inciting the violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th and attempting to overturn a free and fair election," the New York Democrat said.

Schumer said a trial could begin immediately, if Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., agreed, or after Democrats officially take control of the chamber, which will happen later this month.

"But make no mistake, there will be an impeachment trial in the United States Senate; there will be a vote on convicting the president for high crimes and misdemeanors; and if the president is convicted, there will be a vote on barring him from running again," Schumer said.

Tucker Higgins

National Guard says a portion of the troops at U.S. Capitol will be armed

Members of the National Guard are given weapons before Democrats begin debating one article of impeachment against U.S. President Donald Trump at the U.S. Capitol, in Washington, U.S., January 13, 2021.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters

WASHINGTON — A portion of the 20,000 National Guard troops supporting U.S. Capitol security and President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration will be armed, the National Guard Bureau confirmed to CNBC.

"This was requested by federal authorities and authorized by the Secretary of the Army. National Guard members are postured to meet the requirements of the supported civil authorities, up to and including protective equipment and being armed if necessary," a National Guard Bureau spokesperson wrote in a statement.

For security reasons, officials from the National Guard and the Pentagon would not elaborate on the exact number of troops that will be armed and if the troops will be armed after Inauguration Day.

Earlier in the week, Army Gen. Daniel Hokanson, chief of the National Guard Bureau told reporters that the troops arriving to support local law enforcement in Washington will bring their weapons.

"Ideally, we will never need them, but if we do, we want to know that they are close by and readily accessible" Hokanson added.

Hokanson reiterated that it is typical for the National Guard to support law enforcement for inaugurations, adding that there were approximately 9,000 National Guard members at former President Barack Obama's inauguration. For Trump's ceremony in 2017, more than 7,000 troops were mobilized.

On Wednesday, photos emerged of National Guard troops resting throughout the U.S. Capitol Complex. When asked about photos a spokesperson for D.C. National Guard said that the locations were designated rest areas in between shifts.

Members of the National Guard rest in the U.S. Capitol on January 13, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Stefani Reynolds | Getty Images

"To be clear, this is not where they are lodging when off-duty," the spokesperson said, adding "our security personnel work in shifts and rest when they can as others stand watch." 

– Amanda Macias

McConnell says 'no chance' of Trump verdict before Biden takes office

Minutes after the House voted to impeach President Donald Trump, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said there was "no chance" a verdict could be reached in President Trump Donald Trump's Senate trial before President-elect Joe Biden takes office next week.

McConnell's statement all but confirms that Trump will serve out the remainder of his term.

"Given the rules, procedures, and Senate precedents that govern presidential impeachment trials, there is simply no chance that a fair or serious trial could conclude before President-elect Biden is sworn in next week," McConnell's statement said.

"Even if the Senate process were to begin this week and move promptly, no final verdict would be reached until after President Trump had left office. This is not a decision I am making; it is a fact," he said.

McConnell also urged lawmakers and the executive branch to spend the next week "completely focused on facilitating a safe inauguration and an orderly transfer of power to the incoming Biden Administration," rather than on convicting and removing Trump.

Kevin Breuninger

House votes to impeach Trump for inciting Capitol riot

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House votes 232-197 to impeach Pres. Trump for second time, including 10 Republicans

The House voted to impeach President Donald Trump for inciting a mob of his supporters to storm the U.S. Capitol.

The 232-197 vote marks the second time in two years that the House has voted to impeach Trump — a first for any president in U.S. history.

Ten House Republicans voted with the Democratic majority in support of the impeachment article. No Democrats broke ranks to vote against Trump's impeachment.

The matter will move to the Senate, which will hold a trial and vote on whether to convict Trump and remove him from office. The Senate, led by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., does not currently plan to convene until Tuesday at the earliest, a day before President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration.

Kevin Breuninger

Olympic gold medal swimmer Klete Keller criminally charged in Capitol riot

Klete Keller of the United States of America after finishing second in the Men's 200m Freestyle heats during the XII FINA World Championships at the Rod Laver Arena on March 26, 2007 in Melbourne, Australia.
Vladimir Rys | Bongarts | Getty Images

Klete Keller, a three-time U.S. Olympic swimmer and gold medalist, was criminally charged Wednesday with participating in the Capitol riot, where he was identified in a video showing him wearing his USA Swimming jacket.

Keller is charged with obstructing law enforcement, knowingly entering or remaining in a restricted building or grounds without lawful authority, and violent entry and disorderly conduct, according to a complaint in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C.

The 38-year-old, who has been working as a real estate broker in Colorado, won five medals in the 2000, 2004 and 2008 Olympics.

His two gold medals came as a member of relay teams that included Michael Phelps, who holds 23 Olympic gold medals.

Members of the swimming community reportedly noted Keller's presence on a video from the riot, which showed supporters of President Donald Trump physically resisting police officers who were attempting to clear them out of the Capitol rotunda.

The swimming news site SwimSwam reported that "Keller has deleted all of his social media accounts, but prior to their deletion, he was an outspoken supporter of President Trump."

Hoff & Leigh, where Klete Keller was employed as an Associate Broker confirmed that Keller had resigned from the company on Tuesday.

Also charged Wednesday was Robert Packer, a man who was seen among the mob that invaded the Capitol wearing a sweatshirt bearing the words "Camp Auschwitz," and the phrase, "Work Brings Freedom."

Packer is charged with entering a restricted building or grounds, and violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds.

—Dan Mangan

GOP Rep. Peter Meijer is 7th House Republican to say he'll vote to impeach

Michigan's 3rd District Congressional Republican candidate Peter Meijer speaks at a campaign rally, Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020, in Grand Rapids, Mich.
Carlos Osorio | AP

GOP Rep. Pete Meijer, R-Mich., said he will vote to impeach the president, becoming the the 7th House lawmaker in Trump's own party to publicly support his removal.

"I have wrestled with the division this vote will cause. I wrestled with the precedent it will establish and I have concerns with due process. I have wrestled with whether impeachment, an inherently political process, is a meaningful mechanism of accountability for the seriousness of the President's actions," Meijer said in a statement.

"But today, my job is to apply my best judgment to the article of impeachment that is on the floor of the US Congress. With the facts at hand, I believe the article of impeachment to be accurate," the Michigan Republican added. "The President betrayed his oath of office by seeking to undermine our constitutional process, and he bears responsibility for inciting the violent acts of insurrection last week."

Meijer is a freshman representative who holds the seat previously occupied by Rep. Justin Amash, a former Republican who left the party in 2019. Amash was the first Republican congressman to call for Trump to be impeached during the last impeachment saga.

-- Tucker Higgins

Voting begins on impeaching Trump for inciting Capitol riot

U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) speaks during debate ahead of a House of Representatives vote on impeachment against U.S. President Donald Trump for his role in last week's siege of the U.S. Capitol, formally charging Trump with inciting insurrection in a speech shortly before the riot, in this frame grab from video shot inside the House Chamber of the Capitol in Washington, January 13, 2021.
House TV via Reuters

The House began voting on an article of impeachment against President Donald Trump for inciting last week's riot at the Capitol that resulted in five deaths and stopped Congress from confirming Joe Biden's Electoral College victory.

The voting period, which follows two hours of debate between dozens of members of the House floor, is expected to last approximately 40 minutes.

Seven House Republicans have said they will vote to impeach Trump. No Democrats have signaled they will break ranks and vote against the impeachment article.

House Democrats have pushed the Senate to quickly hold a trial to convict Trump once the lower chamber votes to impeach him. The Senate, led by Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., does not currently plan to convene until Tuesday at the earliest, a day before Biden's inauguration.

Kevin Breuninger

Trump is monitoring impeachment debate from the White House

US President Donald Trump looks on during a ceremony presenting the Presidential Medal of Freedom to wrestler Dan Gable in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC on December 7, 2020.
Saul Loeb | AFP | Getty Images

As lawmakers debate whether to impeach Trump for an unprecedented second time, the outgoing president is monitoring from the White House Oval Office and the dining room, an administration official told NBC News.

Trump has hardly appeared in public since the riots last week, and has not been able to use his Twitter feed since the social media company suspended his account. The White House put out a statement under Trump's name earlier in the day urging his supporters to be peaceful.

Tucker Higgins

McConnell tells colleagues he's undecided about voting to convict Trump

VIDEO0:4700:47
McConnell: No decision yet on how I will vote on Trump impeachment

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., told colleagues that he has yet to decide whether or not he will vote to convict President Donald Trump following the Senate impeachment trial.

"While the press has been full of speculation, I have not made a final decision on how I will vote and I intend to listen to the legal arguments when they are presented to the Senate," McConnell said in a message to his GOP colleagues.

A spokesman for McConnell confirmed that portion of the note to CNBC.

The New York Times reported Tuesday that McConnell is said to be pleased about the second impeachment of the Republican president, and has told associates that he believes Trump committed impeachable offenses.

Kevin Breuninger

Trump urges supporters to refrain from violence

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the press as he departs the White House on travel to visit the U.S.-Mexico border Wall in Texas, in Washington, U.S., January 12, 2021.
Kevin Lemarque | Reuters

As the House debated his impeachment, President Donald Trump issued a brief statement Wednesday urging his supporters to refrain from violence.

"In light of reports of more demonstrations, I urge that there must be NO violence, NO lawbreaking and NO vandalism of any kind," Trump said. "That is not what I stand for, and it is not what America stands for. I call on ALL Americans to help ease tensions and calm tempers. Thank You."

The statement, provided by the White House, came as the president remains unable to use his social media accounts following his encouragement of rioters last week.

In a statement issued at around the same time as Trump's, Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel urged peace.

"Those who partook in the assault on our nation's Capitol and those who continue to threaten violence should be found, held accountable, and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law," McDaniel said. "Let me be clear: Anyone who has malicious intent is not welcome in Washington, D.C. or in any other state capitol."

— Tucker Higgins

VIDEO1:3301:33
Trump: I urge no violence, no lawbreaking, no vandalism

Rep. Dan Newhouse is first in GOP to support Trump's impeachment on House floor

VIDEO1:1401:14
With a heavy heart and clear resolve, I will vote yes on impeachment: Rep. Dan Newhouse

Rep. Dan Newhouse of Washington became the first Republican to speak on the House floor in support of the Democrat-led push to impeach President Donald Trump.

"This is a sad day in our republic, but not as sad or disheartening as the violence we witnessed in the Capitol last Wednesday," Newhouse said.

"We are all responsible," Newhouse said. He criticized Democrats for their reluctance to condemn rioters and looters during a wave of protests against police brutality and racial injustice over the summer.

"Others, including myself, are responsible for not speaking out sooner, before the president misinformed and inflamed a violent mob," he said.

"We must all do better. These articles of impeachment are flawed, but I will not use process as an excuse. There is no excuse for President Trump's actions," he said.

"Last week there was a domestic threat at the door of the Capitol, and he did nothing to stop it," he said. "That is why, with a heavy heart and clear resolve, I will vote yes on these articles of impeachment."

Newhouse was greeted with a round of applause as he concluded his remarks.

Five other Republicans, including House GOP Conference Chair Liz Cheney, previously issued statements in support of impeaching Trump.

Kevin Breuninger

Senate will not reconvene before Tuesday, making Trump removal unlikely

Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's office confirmed that the Senate will not reconvene until Tuesday, one day before President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration.

That means President Donald Trump probably will not be removed from office before Biden takes office on Jan. 20, and Trump's trial will stretch into Biden's first term.

If the Senate votes to convict, however, Trump would be barred from running for president again.

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., had called on McConnell to call the Senate back from recess for an emergency session for Trump's impeachment trial, but the Kentucky Republican declined. Schumer is set to become majority leader after Democrats won the special elections in Georgia.

—Spencer Kimball

House GOP leader rejects impeachment but says Trump bears blame for riot

VIDEO9:4909:49
Republican Leader McCarthy: Trump should accept responsibility, quell unrest

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said President Donald Trump "bears responsibility" for last week's invasion of the U.S. Capitol by a mob of his supporters.

But the California Republican, who had previously been aggressively loyal to Trump, maintained that impeaching Trump over the riots "would be a mistake."

"No investigations have been completed. No hearings have been held. What's more, the Senate has confirmed that no trial will begin until after President-elect Biden is sworn in," McCarthy said Wednesday during debate on the House floor before the impeachment vote.

"But here is what a vote to impeach would do: A vote to impeach will further divide the nation. A vote to impeach will further fan the flames of partisan division. Most Americans want neither inaction nor retribution. They want durable, bipartisan justice," McCarthy said.

But he added: "That doesn't mean the president is free from fault. The president bears responsibility for Wednesday's attack on Congress by mob rioters. He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding."

"These facts require immediate actions by President Trump: Accept his share of responsibility. Quell the brewing unrest. And ensure President-elect Biden is able to successfully begin his term," McCarthy said.

— Kevin Breuninger

Rep. Jim Clyburn — Trump's actions pose an 'existential threat' to democracy

U.S. House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC) speaks to reporters in the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., December 8, 2020.
Erin Scott | Reuters

Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., said President Donald Trump must be "prevented from ever attempting to seize power again."

Clyburn, the House majority whip, said Trump's "refusal to participate in the peaceful transfer of power and his role in the inciting of the last week's violence pose an existential threat to our constitutional democracy."

"This threat must be extinguished immediately. This president must be impeached and convicted," Clyburn said.

Kevin Breuninger

'They want to cancel the president'— Rep. Jim Jordan rebuts Pelosi opening statement

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) wears a protective mask during a Rules Committee meeting at the U.S. Capitol on January 12, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Stefani Reynolds | Getty Images

Republican Rep. Jim Jordan said the Democrats' second impeachment bid is just the latest chapter in a years-long campaign to "cancel" President Donald Trump.

"This doesn't unite the country," said Jordan, the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., kicked off the debate.

"There's no way this helps the nation deal with the tragic and terrible events of last week that we all condemn," Jordan said.

"And Republicans have been consistent. We've condemned all the violence, all the time," he added, comparing the invasion of the U.S. Capitol by Trump's supporters to last summer's massive protest movement against racial injustice and police brutality, where looting and rioting at times took place.

"We should be focused on bringing the nation together. Instead, Democrats are going to impeach the president for a second time, one week before he leaves office," Jordan said.

"Why? Politics, and the fact that they want to cancel the president."

Kevin Breuninger

'He must go' — Pelosi kicks off debate over impeaching Trump for inciting Capitol riot

VIDEO7:1207:12
House Speaker Pelosi opens debate on President Trump's impeachment

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called on lawmakers to uphold their oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic, by voting to impeach President Donald Trump for inciting an insurrection against Congress in an effort to overturn the 2020 election.

"We know we face enemies of the Constitution, we know we experienced the insurrection that violated the sanctity of the people's Capitol and attempted to overturn the duly recorded will of the American people," Pelosi said in an fiery speech that opened debate on the House floor.

"And we know that the president of the United States incited this insurrection, this armed rebellion against our common country," Pelosi said.

"He must go. He is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love."

Pelosi pointed to Trump's efforts to "unconstitutionally influence state election officials to repeal reality." She called for the Senate convict Trump "to ensure that the republic will be safe from this man who so resolutely determined to tear down the things we hold dear."

—Spencer Kimball

This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

Lindsey Graham says Trump impeachment could invite more violence

U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham looks on as he walks at the McAllen-Miller International Airport, in McAllen, Texas, January 12, 2021.
Carlos Barria | Reuters

Trump ally Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said Wednesday he opposes impeaching the president and warned that the effort could lead to more violence.

"The process being used in the House to impeach President Trump is an affront to any concept of due process and will further divide the country," Graham said in a statement. "The President, who will be leaving office in less than a week, has committed to an orderly transfer of power, encouraging calm and rejecting violence."

Graham has loyally stood by the president for much of his term, but earned the ire of some hardline supporters after refusing to object to President-elect Joe Biden's victory last week during the joint session of Congress after it was disrupted by the riot.

Graham acknowledged in a speech at the time that Biden was "the legitimate president of the United States."

In his statement, Graham took issue with members of the GOP leadership who are said to back removing Trump from office. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., privately supports impeachment, The New York Times reported.

"As to Senate leadership, I fear they are making the problem worse, not better," Graham said.

Tucker Higgins

House starts debate on impeaching Trump

The House started final debate on impeaching President Donald Trump for inciting the attack on the Capitol last week.

The chamber will spend two hours discussing whether the president committed high crimes and misdemeanors by urging his supporters to fight the 2020 election result. It will then vote on charging Trump with incitement of insurrection.

All Democrats voted for procedural motions to start debate on impeachment. Every Republican opposed them.

The House is expected to make Trump the first U.S. president impeached twice. At least five Republicans said they will join Democrats in charging the president.

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., told NBC News the chamber would send the article of impeachment to the Senate immediately after it gets approved. The upper chamber as of now does not plan to convene until Tuesday, a day before Joe Biden's inauguration, but Democrats argue it could start an impeachment trial sooner using emergency powers.

— Jacob Pramuk

Senate could vote to remove Trump from office as early as Monday, Rep. Clyburn says

House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC) walks to the House Chamber as Democrats debate one article of impeachment against U.S. President Donald Trump at the U.S. Capitol, in Washington, U.S., January 13, 2021.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters

High-ranking House Democrat Jim Clyburn said the Senate could vote to oust President Donald Trump from office as soon as Monday.

In an MSNBC interview, the South Carolina congressman stressed the importance of quickly wrapping up the impeachment trial to make way for the Biden administration to address crucial issues, especially the coronavirus pandemic, without distraction.

"We can't get beyond the pandemic having a trial. We've got to put in place a new administrative effort," said Clyburn, whose endorsement of Joe Biden in the Democratic primary was key to Biden's nomination.

Clyburn said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., appears willing to move proceedings forward. McConnell has reportedly outlined a longer timeline that would prevent a Senate trial from commencing until the day before Biden is sworn in, but a bombshell report from The New York Times on Tuesday said McConnell had privately said he believes Trump committed impeachable offenses.

"I don't want to see us bogged down with a trial. But if the majority leader is going to keep his word and move forthrightly, this can be done and we can have the vote to expel from office on Monday," Clyburn said.

Kevin Breuninger

GOP donor Ken Langone says he feels 'betrayed' by Capitol riot, urges support for Biden

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'I feel betrayed' — Ken Langone on fallout from U.S. Capitol breach

GOP donor and businessman Ken Langone ripped President Donald Trump and his supporters who overtook the U.S. Capitol last week, telling CNBC the deadly events were "a disgrace" to the country.

"I think the biggest mistake anybody is going to make is try and rationalize what happened last week, what the president did and what that crowd did," Langone said on "Squawk Box." "There should be no mitigation at all. It was horrible. It was wrong. I'm shocked."

While Langone has previously been supportive of Trump's economic policies, the Home Depot co-founder said "I feel betrayed" by the Capitol riot, which Trump helped incite with his repeated lies about widespread election fraud and his exhortations to supporters outside the White House just before they marched to the Capitol last Wednesday.

Langone urged Americans to rally behind President-elect Joe Biden following his inauguration next week. "I'm going to do everything I can from Day One to make sure I do my part to make Joe Biden the most successful president in the history of this country," Langone said.

Kevin Stankiewicz

Google pausing political ads, Airbnb blocking DC reservations ahead of inauguration

A woman talks on the phone at the Airbnb office headquarters in the SOMA district of San Francisco, California.
Gabrielle Lurie | Reuters

Tech companies Google and Airbnb on Wednesday announced actions ahead President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration next week.

Google said it will pause political ads along with any referencing "impeachment, inauguration or protests at the U.S. Capitol" beginning Thursday.

"We regularly pause ads over unpredictable, 'sensitive' events when ads can be used to exploit the event or amplify misleading information," Google said in a statement Wednesday. "Beyond this, we have long-standing policies blocking content that incites violence or promotes hate and we will be extremely vigilant about enforcing on any ads that cross this line."

Airbnb said Wednesday it will be canceling and blocking future reservations in the Washington metro area during the week of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration.

Guests who had reserved a place will be refunded in full. The company said it will also reimburse the Airbnb hosts with the money that would have been earned from the canceled reservations. HotelTonight reservations will also be canceled, it said.

— Megan Graham and Jessica Bursztynsky

House to send article of impeachment to Senate immediately, Hoyer says

U.S. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) speaks to reporters as Democrats debate one article of impeachment against U.S. President Donald Trump at the U.S. Capitol, in Washington, U.S., January 13, 2021.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters

The House plans to send its article of impeachment charging President Donald Trump with incitement to insurrection immediately after the Democratic-controlled chamber passes it, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said Wednesday.

Another Democratic leader, Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina, had suggested waiting some weeks to send it to the Senate in order to give President-elect Joe Biden time to establish his administration. Hoyer said Wednesday that the Clyburn suggestion was no longer under consideration.

Biden will be inaugurated in one week.

The House is expected to begin debating the article of impeachment at 12:30 p.m. ET and vote on it starting at 3 p.m. It is expected to pass, particularly as several Republicans have now signed on to the effort.

– Mike Calia

AOC: 'I thought I was going to die' during Capitol invasion

U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) talks with colleagues on the floor of the House Chamber a members of congress gathered to take their oath of office during the first session of the 117th Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., January 3, 2021.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said she "had a very close encounter where I thought I was going to die" during the Capitol riot.

"I did not know if I was going to make it to the end of the day alive," Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., said during a livestream Tuesday night from her Instagram account detailing the invasion by a mob of supporters of President Donald Trump.

The congresswoman, who represents a district that covers parts of New York City's Queens and Bronx boroughs, did not give details of the incident that she described to more than 100,000 Instagram followers.

But she said that during the chaos "I did not even feel safe around [some] other members of Congress" who have endorsed the QAnon conspiracy theory.

Ocasio-Cortez said that when she and other representatives gathered at an "extraction point" where they were to be taken to a secure location, she was worried because she saw rioters who appeared to be motivated by the QAnon hoax, and other Republican representatives who believed that theory.

"I don't want to hear the Republican Party talk about 'blue lives' again," she said, referring to the motto "Blue Lives Matter" used by supporters of police against "Black Lives Matter" protesters.

"They don't give a damn about order. They don't give a damn about safety. They care about White supremacy," she said about Republicans who have sought to undo Joe Biden's election as president. "They have a lust for power more than they care about democracy."

— Dan Mangan

Acting attorney general says more arrests coming from Capitol riot

Acting U.S. Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen speaks at a a news conference at the Justice Department in Washington, October 21, 2020. He was deputy attorney general at the time.
Yuri Gripas | Pool | Reuters

The Justice Department has charged more than 70 people involved in last week's invasion of the U.S. Capitol — and more arrests are coming, acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen said.

"The wrongdoers will be held responsible," Rosen said in a surprise video message at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday ET.

The siege by swarms of President Donald Trump's supporters "was an intolerable, shocking and tragic episode in our nation's history," said Rosen, who replaced William Barr following his resignation on Dec. 23.

"I'm grateful, however, that order was restored at the Capitol the same day and the Congress was able to fulfill its duties under the U.S. Constitution," Rosen said, referring to the House and Senate reconvening to confirm President-elect Joe Biden's Electoral College victory.

Rosen made clear that the work of federal law enforcement to hold the perpetrators responsible was just beginning.

In addition to the criminal charges already delivered, the DOJ has opened more than 170 investigations and the FBI has received more than 100,000 digital tips from the public, Rosen said.

"And there is a lot more to come," he said.

Rosen also issued a stark warning to anyone planning violence or threats during protests ahead of Biden's inauguration next Wednesday.

"We will have no tolerance whatsoever for any attempts to disrupt the peaceful transfer on January 20 that our Constitution calls for," Rosen said.

"Any wrongdoers will be caught, and they will be accountable."

Kevin Breuninger

New York City will cancel several contracts with Trump's business

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks at Bryant Park on Nov. 5, 2020.
Alexi Rosenfeld | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images

New York City will cancel three contracts it has with President Donald Trump's business, the Trump Organization, in the wake of the deadly insurrection by his supporters last week on the U.S. Capitol.

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that the city will begin the process of ending the company's operation of a carousel and two skating rinks in Central Park and a golf course in The Bronx, Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point.

"The President incited a rebellion against the United States government that killed five people and threatened to derail the constitutional transfer of power," Democrat de Blasio said in a statement.

"The City of New York will not be associated with those unforgivable acts in any shape, way or form, and we are immediately taking steps to terminate all Trump Organization contracts," said the mayor, who has frequently sparred with the president.

The termination of the skating rink and carousel contracts are expected to take several weeks, while the golf course contract will take months to terminate, the city said.

The mayor's office cited the recent decision by the The PGA of America to move its 2022 championship from Trump's Bedminster, New Jersey, golf course. "In its contract with the Trump Organization to run Ferry Point Golf Course, the City called for a championship level golf course that would attract major championship events," the release said.

Eric Trump, a senior executive at the Trump Organization, said in a statement that the city "has no legal right to end our contracts and if they elect to proceed, they will owe The Trump Organization over $30 million."

— Tucker Higgins

NJ governor worried about violence at state capitol before Biden's inauguration

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NJ Gov. Phil Murphy says officials are preparing for violence at state capitol

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said his government is preparing to respond to violence in the state's capital of Trenton before President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration.

Asked on CNBC's "Squawk Box" if he is worried about violence in Trenton between now and Jan. 20, Murphy replied, "Yeah, we are, unfortunately and sadly."

"I've already had several meetings on this and we've got several more to come. And, we're going to be as prepared as we can be for it, but this whole notion of inciting folks to behave violently is the last thing we need right now in our country," Murphy said.

Murphy added that the death of New Jersey native Brian Sicknick, the U.S. Capitol Police officer who died after sustaining injuries in the pro-Trump riot at the Capitol last week, "hit close to home." Sicknick was one of five confirmed deaths linked to the invasion.

Murphy declined to go into detail on specific threats, but noted that he is mainly focused on calls for protesters to gather at state capitols around the country for a pro-Second Amendment march on Sunday.

"That's what we're most focused on right now, and we're working with all the agencies and federal partners that we've got," Murphy said. "What we do need is steady, calm leadership. Let's get through this transition peacefully and on to better days."

Kevin Breuninger