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Gohmert at a separate meeting of the House Judiciary Committee in July. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images.

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) gave a House floor speech following the first major vote on impeachment Thursday, calling the measure a "coup" against President Trump and warning of a potential "civil war."

The big picture: The House voted 232-196 on Thursday to formally introduce the impeachment inquiry against President Trump after Republicans said the inquiry is not legitimate because a full House vote had not been held.

  • Republicans have been protesting an alleged lack of transparency in the impeachment process. Gohmert complained that "armed guards" were outside a secure room where depositions were recently held.

What he's saying: "Never in the history of this country have we had such gross unfairness that one party would put armed guards with guns to prevent the duly authorized people from being able to hear the witnesses and see them for themselves," Gohmert stated.

  • “It’s about to push this country to a civil war if they were to get their wishes. And if there’s one thing I don’t want to see in my lifetime, I don’t want to ever have participation in, it’s a civil war. Some historian, I don’t remember who, said, guns are only involved in the last phase of a civil war.”

Reality check: Only members of certain committees are permitted to hear depositions, but those committee are made up of both Republicans and Democrats.

Go deeper: How Democrats and Republicans see impeachment

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - World

Pentagon: 8,500 troops on high alert for possible deployment to eastern Europe

Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has placed 8,500 U.S. troops on "heightened preparedness to deploy" to eastern Europe in case NATO activates its rapid-response force over tensions with Russia, the Pentagon announced Monday.

Why it matters: No decisions have been made to deploy U.S. forces, but the heightened alert level will allow the military to rapidly shore up NATO's eastern flank in the event that Russia invades Ukraine. The Pentagon warned that Russia has shown "no signs of de-escalating," and continues to amass troops on Ukraine's borders.

Alabama's new congressional map rejected by federal judges

The Alabama State Capitol in Montgomery. Photo: Taylor Hill/Getty Images

Federal judges on Monday night blocked Alabama's newly drawn congressional map and ordered the Republican-led State Legislature to create a new one that includes two districts, rather than the planned one.

Why it matters: "Black voters have less opportunity than other Alabamians to elect candidates of their choice to Congress," the panel of three judges wrote in their ruling.

Australian Open organizers reverse "Where is Peng Shuai?" t-shirt ban

Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai during the 2020 Australian Open in Melbourne. Photo: Bai Xue/Xinhua via Getty Images

Australian Open organizers on Tuesday reversed a ban on t-shirts supporting Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai following widespread criticism.

Why it matters: Tennis Australia's announcement came less than 24 hours after the governing body defended the decision to ask fans last Friday to remove "Where is Peng Shuai?" t-shirts, citing ticket policy prohibiting political clothing, per the BBC.