House impeaches Trump for role in deadly Capitol riot

By Meg Wagner, Melissa Macaya, Mike Hayes, Melissa Mahtani, Fernando Alfonso III and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 8:54 a.m. ET, January 14, 2021
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12:09 p.m. ET, January 13, 2021

House Republican defiant over decision to vote for impeachment: "I'm not in fear at all"

From CNN's Manu Raju

In an interview with CNN's Manu Raju, Rep. Jaime Herrera-Beutler, a Republican from Washington, said "I’m not in fear at all," over whether her vote to impeach President Trump would have consequences.

"This decision was not, like, a fear-based decision for me," she said.

Beutler announced last night that she would vote to impeach Trump citing "indisputable evidence," over his role in the Capitol riot.

"This is definitely the most, I think, consequential vote I've ever taken as a member," she told CNN, "and see, more than anything, I just, I just want people to know this isn't about choosing sides, this is about choosing truth."

Beutler added that she's preparing to deliver a statement on the House floor on her vote to impeach.

She’s one of five House Republicans who’ve broken rank so far in announcing their intent to impeach President Donald Trump.

12:21 p.m. ET, January 13, 2021

A Georgia man charged as part of the Capitol insurrection has died by suicide  

From CNN's Devon Sayers 

The death of a Georgia man who was charged as part of the Capitol insurrection has been ruled a suicide, officials say.

Police in suburban Atlanta responded Saturday morning to a call and found Christopher Stanton Georgia dead.  

The Fulton County Medical Examiner office performed an autopsy on Monday and has ruled his death a suicide. 

Two rifles were recovered from his home according to an incident report from the Alpharetta Police department. 

Georgia was charged with unlawful entry of the US Capitol, as well as violating a citywide curfew according to court documents filed in Washington. 

12:25 p.m. ET, January 13, 2021

Republican leaders think they'll lose about a dozen votes in impeachment

From CNN's Manu Raju

House Republican leaders believe they will lose about a dozen votes over the impeachment of President Trump, GOP sources familiar with the matter tell CNN. 

It's not certain yet, but that's the thinking right now, those sources tell CNN. 

Manu Raju reports from Capitol Hill: Division is playing out in the hallways

12:00 p.m. ET, January 13, 2021

House Republican: There's "a lot to think about" in impeachment vote decision

From CNN's Clare Foran 

GOP Rep. Dan Newhouse said that he has “a lot to think about” when asked if he has decided how he’s going to vote on impeachment today in the House.

He called it “a big decision,” and said he wants to hear the debate play out.

Some context: We expect just a handful of Republicans to vote with Democrats to impeach Wednesday. One aide put that estimate at no more than 20.

4:50 p.m. ET, January 13, 2021

Jim Jordan says Liz Cheney should be removed from GOP leadership position for supporting Trump's impeachment

From CNN's Daniella Diaz, Annie Grayer and Lauren Fox

From left, Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney and Rep. Jim Jordan
From left, Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney and Rep. Jim Jordan Getty Images/AP

Rep. Jim Jordan, a staunch Trump ally on Capitol Hill, told reporters he thinks Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney should be ousted from her leadership position after she said she'd support impeaching the President.

"I think she's totally wrong," he said. "I think there should be a conference and have a second vote on that," he added.

Some context: Cheney, the No. 3 House Republican, announced Tuesday she would vote in favor of impeachment, issuing a scathing statement that charged there had "never been a greater betrayal by a President of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution."

The number of Republicans who will ultimately vote for impeachment remains unclear, with estimates ranging from 10 to as many as 20. So far, five Republicans have said they will vote to impeach Trump, including Cheney. They are:

  1. Rep. John Katko of New York
  2. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington
  3. Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois
  4. Rep. Fred Upton of Michigan
  5. Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming
11:50 a.m. ET, January 13, 2021

Here's what it looks like outside the Capitol as lawmakers debate impeachment inside

Members of the National Guard walk outside the US Capitol on Wednesday, January 13.
Members of the National Guard walk outside the US Capitol on Wednesday, January 13. Sarah Silbiger/Bloomberg/Getty Images

As lawmakers debate on President Trump's impeachment on the House floor inside, multiple layers of security are in place around the Capitol. Fencing, steel barriers and armed National Guard members surround the grounds, CNN correspondent Brian Todd reports.

Here's a look at what is in place:

  • National Guard members are surrounding the entire grounds of the Capitol. They were just issued weapons, many of them carrying semi-automatic rifles, Todd reported on CNN this morning.
  • Additionally, other military police, police from other jurisdictions, the Capitol Hill police and the Washington Metropolitan police are in the area with the National Guard.
  • Traffic is completely shut off around the Capitol. A roadblock is up on Independence Avenue along with an 8-foot fence around the southwest corner of the Capitol grounds that has been up since after the riots last week.
  • There are also squad cars in some sections of the city and dump trucks blocking roads. In other places, there are steel barriers.

Weapons are distributed to members of the National Guard outside the US Capitol on January 13.
Weapons are distributed to members of the National Guard outside the US Capitol on January 13. Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

"You can't really walk in this area unless you have some kind of ID saying you should be here. Just foot traffic around here is highly restricted," Todd said.

This comes as members of Congress continue to speak out about the vulnerable position the violent Capitol breach put them in, as well as concerns they have about their security going forward ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Jan. 20.

In addition to National Guard members inside the Capitol, there are now metal detectors installed outside the House floor for all members and staff to go through.

CNN's Brian Todd reports on the scene outside the Capitol:

11:43 a.m. ET, January 13, 2021

Pelosi expected to speak at 12:15 p.m. ET to open impeachment resolution debate

From CNN's Manu Raju

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will open debate on the impeachment resolution, her spokesperson says.

Her remarks are expected around 12:15 p.m. ET.

Where things stand now: The House is currently voting on the rules governing the impeachment article.

Once the House passes the rule, the House will then proceed to a two-hour debate on the impeachment resolution.

Democrats are charging Trump with "incitement of insurrection" for his role in last week’s deadly Capitol attack

You can read the full resolution here.

11:55 a.m. ET, January 13, 2021

Michigan Attorney General is "apoplectic" about security concerns in lead up to inauguration

From CNN's Aditi Sangal

Following an FBI warning about "armed protests" being planned at all 50 state capitols, Michigan has stepped up its security. Attorney General Dana Nessel says she is “"apoplectic" because she’s gravely concerned about the situation and does not think that the state capitol is safe.

Michigan's Capitol Commission banned the open carry of firearms inside the Capitol building in Lansing, beginning Jan. 11. The move was a response to the US Capitol riot as well as the spring incidents in which heavily armed demonstrators jammed inside the Michigan state Capitol to protest pandemic-related lockdowns. In addition, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, was the target of an alleged domestic terror plot by members of right wing militia groups.

"I think Michigan was definitely ground zero," Nessel said. "I think it was a dry run and people saw how very easy it was to essentially take over a state capitol building. And the lesson that they drew away from that was, ‘why not try it at the nation's capitol? If we can do it in Lansing, Michigan, maybe we can do the same thing in Washington, DC.’ And they were right," she told CNN. 

Nessel added that she expects the same people that were involved in the events at DC "to be back in Lansing."

Watch the full interview on CNN:

11:29 a.m. ET, January 13, 2021

McConnell is signaling he's in favor of impeachment, GOP source says

From CNN's Jamie Gangel

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell arrives at the US Capitol on January 1.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell arrives at the US Capitol on January 1.  Samuel Corum/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is signaling he is in favor of impeachment, a GOP source familiar with McConnell's thinking tells CNN.

"Unlike Kevin McCarthy, he doesn't think Trump will just fade away, thinks the party needs to make a clean break to save itself," this person said. 

Ultimately, however, it is up to McConnell to say where he stands on impeachment. His silence so far has been deliberate, and he is very careful with what he says.  

A separate Republican source said they expect about 10-20 House Republicans to vote for impeachment. The source went on to say that the White House is putting huge pressure on members, and that members are saying "they want to vote to impeach but they legitimately fear for their lives and their families’ lives."

This person points out that a week after Jan. 6th, President Trump is still trying to intimidate members, adding that people should be careful about numbers being put out by the White House on how many GOP members they expect to vote for impeachment.

This person believes the White House is exaggerating numbers so that when the number of Republicans voting against Trump falls short they can claim victory with Trump to try to make him feel better.  

Additionally, GOP staffers – including those of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy – are upset at members not voting for impeachment and are raising it with their bosses, a source familiar with the matter tells CNN.

And as members push back on impeachment by citing the process, one Republican source told CNN:

"Saying it is rushed is a lame excuse.... This is not about process. We know what happened. We were there. We saw it. We were the targets of it."