“A violent mob attacked the United States Capitol to obstruct the process of our democracy and stop the counting of presidential electoral votes,” Cheney said in a statement Tuesday. “The President of the United States summoned this mob, assembled the mob, and lit the flame of this attack. Everything that followed was his doing. None of this would have happened without the President.”
Cheney said that Trump did not intervene to stop the violence, adding that there “has never been a greater betrayal by a President of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution.”
The House Republican Conference chair is the most prominent Republican member of the House to back impeachment so far. Rep. John Katko of New York said he would back impeachment earlier on Tuesday. Later, Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois said he will also vote in favor of impeachment.
Last week on Jan. 6, following a speech in which Trump repeated lies about the presidential election being stolen, armed pro-Trump rioters — some wearing racist, white nationalist symbols — stormed the Capitol, where lawmakers had convened to certify the results of the election. The rioters overran police lines and rampaged through the Capitol, causing lawmakers to rush to find safety. Five people died as a result of the riot, including a U.S. Capitol Police officer.
On Tuesday, in Trump’s first public appearance since last week’s attack on the Capitol, the president showed no remorse, saying of his speech before the riots: “People thought that what I said was totally appropriate.”
Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania have called on Trump to resign. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has reportedly told people close to him that he believes Trump committed impeachable offenses.