Fallout intensifies over Trump's response to Capitol riot

By Fernando Alfonso III and Mike Hayes, CNN

Updated 5:33 PM ET, Sun January 10, 2021
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11:42 a.m. ET, January 10, 2021

Democratic senator says there's "no doubt" that Trump should be impeached

From CNN's Ali Main and Rebecca Grandahl

Sen. Joe Manchin, Democrat from West Virginia, on January 10.
Sen. Joe Manchin, Democrat from West Virginia, on January 10. CNN

Sen. Joe Manchin, Democrat from West Virginia, told CNN “there’s no doubt” President Trump should be impeached, but that he finds a Senate trial to convict the President to be unrealistic.

Manchin pointed to poor timing as a reason to not have a Senate trial, because it would potentially spill into President-elect Joe Biden's administration.

“I understand we wouldn’t get the articles if the House does it this week coming, we wouldn’t get them until the 19th. So on election day would be the day we could officially start. That doesn’t make any common sense whatsoever,” Manchin said.

Without a Senate trial, Manchin saw a judicial path in the courts as the option “that gives us the best results,” saying, “People have to understand, your words have consequences and we’ve seen it at the most dangerous level.”

When asked about Senators Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley’s parts in spreading lies about election fraud, Manchin said, “I don’t know how they can live with themselves knowing that people have died because of their words and actions.”

11:46 a.m. ET, January 10, 2021

Maryland governor says National Guard authorization was delayed nearly 2-hours on Wednesday

From CNN's Sheena Jones

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan on January 10.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan on January 10. CNN

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said within “minutes” of Wednesday’s attack on the Capitol, the Maryland National Guard was called in but authorization was delayed for 90-minutes, the governor told CNN today.

“Our guard was mobilized and ready,” but the National Guard couldn’t cross the DC border to help, Hogan said, because they couldn’t get approval from officials. 

Since Washington, DC, does not have a governor, permission to activate the National Guard in DC must come from the office of the Secretary of Defense. 

When asked why it took so long, Hogan replied, “We were trying to get answers, but we couldn’t get answers.”

At a news conference earlier this week in Maryland, the governor further explained the exchange.

11:51 a.m. ET, January 10, 2021

Democratic leaders weigh whether to delay sending article of impeachment to Senate

From CNN's Manu Raju

National Guard soldiers stand behind a security fence near the Capitol on January 9.
National Guard soldiers stand behind a security fence near the Capitol on January 9. Daniel Slim/AFP/Getty Images

House Democrats are discussing impeaching Trump this week and waiting until later to send the article of impeachment over to the Senate to delay the trial until after the early days of the Biden presidency, according to Democrats in the party’s leadership.

It was one of the options discussed last night on a conference call to allow the Senate to instead focus on filling Biden’s Cabinet and dealing with a Covid-19 relief package.

Sen. James Clyburn, majority whip, confirmed the discussion on CNN this morning.

“Yes I do have concerns - so does Nancy Pelosi,” Clyburn said of a trial impacting the early days of Biden’s term. He said Speaker Pelosi will make that call.

12:02 p.m. ET, January 10, 2021

Republican senator says he thinks Trump should resign

From CNN's Ali Main

Sen. Pat Toomey, a Republican from Pennsylvania, on January 10.
Sen. Pat Toomey, a Republican from Pennsylvania, on January 10. CNN

Sen. Pat Toomey, a Republican from Pennsylvania, said he thinks President Trump should resign following the insurrection on Capitol Hill on Wednesday.

"I think at this point, with just a few days left, it's the best path forward, the best way to get this person in the rearview mirror for us that could happen immediately. I'm not optimistic it will," Toomey told CNN.

Toomey is the second Republican senator to call for the President's resignation, joining Alaska Republican Lisa Murkowski. 

Noting he was not a prosecutor, Toomey said he thought it was possible that President Trump could face "criminal liability" for his incitement of a violent riot. He called the President's behavior "outrageous." 

As for other consequences the President could face, Toomey said he thinks Trump has "disqualified himself from ever certainly serving in office again," adding "I don't think he is electability in any way. And I don't think he's going to be exercising anything like the kind of influence that he has had over the Republican party going forward."

Asked if he would vote to remove the President from office in a Senate impeachment trial, the Pennsylvania Republican repeated that he thinks Trump committed "impeachable offenses" and said he does not know if it is practical or "viable" to carry out the impeachment process in Trump's final days in office.

He said his Republican colleagues who objected to the Electoral College votes on Wednesday are going to "pay a big price" for their actions and that ultimately their constituents will be the ones to "adjudicate this."

 

12:05 p.m. ET, January 10, 2021

Top House Democrat says impeachment article could be sent to Senate after Biden's first 100 days in office

From CNN's Nicky Robertson

House Majority Whip James Clyburn on January 10.
House Majority Whip James Clyburn on January 10. CNN

House Majority Whip James Clyburn says the House could vote on the article of impeachment against President Trump Tuesday or Wednesday of this week, but may delay delivering the article of impeachment to the Senate until after President-elect Joe Biden has had time to work on his agenda. 

When asked by CNN about concerns that a Senate impeachment trial might impact the beginning of the Biden administration, Clyburn suggested delaying the Senate trial until after the first 100 days of the Biden presidency.

“It just so happens that if it didn't go over there for 100 days -- let's give President-elect Biden the 100 days he needs to get his agenda off and running, and maybe we'll send the articles sometime after that,” the Majority Whip said. 

He noted that it is up to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to decide on the timing of the trial; “Pelosi will determine when is best time to get the vote and get the managers.” 

“I would say in this instance it's up to the Speaker to do whatever she thinks is the best thing to do, but all I'm saying is you can manage this in such a way that you make it an effective presentation to the senate,” Clyburn added. 

8:36 a.m. ET, January 10, 2021

House Democratic leaders grapple with ramification of impeachment

From CNN's Phil Mattingly

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi holds a press conference at the Capitol on January 7.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi holds a press conference at the Capitol on January 7. Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

House Democratic leaders have not finalized plans for the coming week, after spending several hours on a call Saturday night working through the possible outcomes tied to impeachment, according to a source with direct knowledge of the call.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi held the call with her leadership team as the Democratic caucus has moved into an almost completely unified position in support of impeaching President Trump for incitement of the insurrection that overran the US Capitol on Jan. 6.

But the timeline – Trump has only 10 days in office – and the repercussions of a Senate trial on the opening days and weeks of President-elect Joe Biden’s term have started to weigh heavily on conversations.

Pelosi, in a letter to colleagues sent Saturday night, made clear action would be taken.

“When we take our oath of office, we promise to the American people our seriousness in protecting our democracy,” Pelosi wrote. “For that reason, it is absolutely essential that those who perpetrated the assault on our democracy be held accountable. There must be a recognition that this desecration was instigated by the President.”

Pelosi also made clear members should be prepared to return to Washington this coming week to take action on something.

What that is, however, remains an open question. House Democrats plan to introduce an impeachment resolution on Jan. 11 drafted by Reps. David Cicilline, Jamie Raskin and Ted Lieu. It already has nearly 190 co-sponsors.

But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made clear in a memo circulated last week that even if the House moved in the coming days to impeach Trump, the Senate would not return to session before Jan. 19. That would place the start of the trial on Jan. 20 – the date of Biden’s inauguration.

From there on out, the Senate is rendered mostly incapable of any action besides the trial until its completion, as was apparent during the first Trump impeachment trial.

House Democratic leaders have begun to factor in what that could mean for Biden’s opening days as president – from the confirmation of his cabinet nominees to the aggressive stimulus proposal he plans to push from his first moments in office. Democrats on the leadership call Saturday night brought this issue up specifically, as they attempted to navigate the complicated dynamics.

POLITICO first reported the details of the House Democratic leadership call.

Pelosi, in her letter to colleagues, made clear the path forward is still very much a work in progress.

“We will be proceeding with meetings with Members and Constitutional experts and others,” Pelosi wrote. “I continue to welcome your comments.”

8:43 a.m. ET, January 10, 2021

Inside the law enforcement chaos at the Capitol

From CNN's Evan Perez, Katelyn Polantz, Phil Mattingly, Vivian Salama, Priscilla Alvarez and Betsy Klein

Pro-Donald Trump rioters try to break through a police barrier on January 6 at the Capitol.
Pro-Donald Trump rioters try to break through a police barrier on January 6 at the Capitol. John Minchillo/AP

The chaotic federal response to the Trump rally Wednesday, which was overwhelmed by rioters who stormed the US Capitol, stood in sharp contrast to the heavily-armed presence of thousands of federal authorities during summer protests in Washington, DC, following the police killing of George Floyd.

Mobs broke through police barricades and rampaged through the Capitol, vandalizing offices and prompting the evacuation of lawmakers just after 2 p.m. ET Wednesday. By dusk, the building was still not secured and a woman had been shot dead.

"Everything. Everything went wrong," one Capitol Police officer on the scene said.

The law enforcement response that allowed a typically heavily secured federal landmark to fall under attack, with rioters breaking through windows and into lawmakers' offices and gathering places, came from a hesitant federal bureaucracy after early assurances from DC and Capitol law enforcement agencies. Agencies that had law enforcement that could help Wednesday waited to be asked.

"It was a mess. Nobody was communicating. No one knew what we were supposed to be doing there," said one federal law enforcement officer who was dispatched to the Capitol.

The primary law enforcement agency tasked with protecting the historic building was the Capitol Police. Spokespeople for the agency have not responded to multiple inquiries from CNN throughout the day.

Justice Department officials were in charge of coordinating the federal agencies and US National Guard response ahead of President Donald Trump's rally near the Washington Monument. Some organizers publicly said they planned to conduct a "wild" march to Capitol Hill as the joint session of Congress met to certify President-elect Joe Biden as the next president.

But agencies were waiting to be asked by other authorities to help -- even as Trump's election protest unraveled.

Read the full story here.