A second Republican senator in the United States has called on Donald Trump to step down after some of the president’s supporters overran the Capitol building in Washington, DC this week in a deadly riot.
In an interview with NBC’s Meet the Press news programme on Sunday, Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey said Trump should resign for the good of the country.
“I think the best way for our country is for the president to resign and go away as soon as possible,” he said.
Toomey said president’s resignation is the “best path forward, the best way to get this person in the rear-view mirror for us”, but added that he did not believe Trump would step down before his term ends on January 20.
He also said the president’s role encouraging the riot was an “impeachable offence”.Momentum has been building among Democratic lawmakers to impeach Trump for inciting the Capitol rioters on January 6. Five people, including one Washington, DC police officer, died during the incident, and dozens of alleged participants have been charged.
Democrats said they plan to introduce an article of impeachment in the US House of Representatives on Monday about the riot.
The impeachment article accuses Trump of engaging “in high Crimes and Misdemeanors by willfully inciting violence against the Government of the United States”, according to a copy US Representative Ted Lieu posted on Twitter on Friday.
Lieu said Sunday that 195 legislators backed the impeachment article.
A day earlier, the California Democrat said he had requested that the New York State Bar Association investigate Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New York City, “for his involvement in the violent insurrection on Capitol Hill”.
Delay in going to Senate
Also on Sunday, House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn said the congressional chamber could vote this week to impeach Trump, but delay sending the legislation to the US Senate until after many of President-elect Joe Biden’s nominated cabinet secretaries are confirmed for their posts.
Clyburn said he is concerned that a Senate trial could distract from the process of confirming Biden’s nominees.
Al Jazeera’s Patty Culhane, reporting from Capitol Hill, said House Democrats appear likely to impeach Trump while he is still in office and then wait until the first 100 days of the incoming Biden administration have gone by before taking the documents to the Senate.
“Then, 100 days later, the Senate can hold a trial,” said Culhane, who pointed out that after wins in election runoffs in Georgia last week, Democrats took control of the Senate.
“So, unlike the last impeachment trial, where Republicans for the first time in the history of this country chose not to call witnesses … the Democrats can make it a full spectacle. They can put him (Trump) on trial.”