Jan 10, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Pelosi tells lawmakers to be ready to return to D.C. next week over Trump

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks during her weekly news conference in Washington on Thursday, Jan. 7
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi during a news conference on Thursday. Photo: Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told Democratic lawmakers in a letter released Saturday night to "be prepared to return" to Washington, D.C., next week.

Why it matters: Although Pelosi did not specifically mention plans to instigate proceedings to impeach or remove President Trump from office over last Wednesday's deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol, she said, "There must be a recognition that this desecration was instigated by the President."

  • She also said it's "absolutely essential that those who perpetrated the assault on our democracy be held accountable."
  • No president has been impeached twice, but Trump is now facing that possibility with 10 days left in his term.

What else she's saying: In the letter, Pelosi said she'd received "scores of communications from Members expressing your views about how we go forward and regarding a strong presence of our Caucus in the Capitol" since a conference call Friday.

  • "Over the last few days, I have discussed your views with Constitutional lawyers, both inside and outside the Congress, to consider the parliamentary and constitutional options available to us," she said.
  • "From what I have heard from Members, and from the deluge that I have received from the public, it is clear that, once again, the Times Have Found Us to save our democracy."

The big picture: Pelosi said Friday that Congress will move forward with impeaching Trump if he doesn't leave office "imminently and willingly." She's asked the Rules Committee to be prepared to move forward with a motion for impeachment.

  • The House is planning to introduce articles of impeachment against Trump as early as Monday, per Axios' Alayna Treene, Alexi McCammond and Kadia Goba.
  • Lawmakers like House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) have said such action would "only divide our country more."
  • The White House did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.
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