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Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

Rep. Tom Rice (R-S.C.) says that while he has "backed [President Trump] through thick and thin," he voted in favor of impeaching Trump on Wednesday because "this utter failure is inexcusable," per a statement released on Wednesday.

Why it matters: Rice is a prolific supporter of Trump's and turned heads by joining nine Republicans in voting to impeach the president for "incitement of insurrection." Rice noted that one week after the Capitol attacks "the President has not addressed the nation to ask for calm. He has not visited the injured and grieving. He has not offered condolences."

  • Trump did release a video on the White House Twitter account Wednesday night condemning the attack, stating, "I want to be very clear: I unequivocally condemn the violence that we saw last week."
  • The president, whose Twitter account has been permanently suspended, insisted last week that the attack on the Capitol is what happens "when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long."

The big picture: The other Republicans who voted for impeachment are Reps. Liz Cheney (Wyo.), David Valadao (Calif.), Anthony Gonzalez (Ohio), Peter Meijer (Mich.), Dan Newhouse (Wash.), Jaime Herrera Beutler (Wash.), Fred Upton (Mich.), John Katko (N.Y.) and Adam Kinzinger (Ill.)

What he's saying: "Under the strict definition of the law, I don’t know if the President’s speech last Wednesday morning amounted to incitement of a riot, but any reasonable person could see the potential for violence," Rice noted.

  • "Once the violence began, when the Capitol was under siege, when the Capitol Police were being beaten and killed, and when the Vice President and the Congress were being locked down, the President was watching and tweeted about the Vice President’s lack of courage."
  • "For hours while the riot continued, the President communicated only on Twitter and offered only weak requests for restraint."

Go deeper

Kudlow says he's "very disappointed" in Trump's treatment of Pence

Larry Kudlow. Photo: Alex Wong via Getty

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow criticized President Trump’s response to last week's U.S. Capitol siege and his treatment of Vice President Mike Pence in the aftermath of the 2020 election, in an interview with The Wall Street Journal on Friday.

The big picture: Trump has lost support from a number of top aides and allies since a mob of his supporters stormed the Capitol building on Jan. 6, resulting in five deaths. Kudlow is the latest to publicly speak out against the president.

Scoop: Comms director for gun-toting congresswoman quits

Rep. Lauren Boebert during the Electoral College debate. Photo: Congress.gov via Getty Images

The communications director for Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, a firebrand Republican freshman who boasts about carrying a gun to work, has quit after less than two weeks on the job.

Why it matters: Ben Goldey’s resignation cited last week's insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, which came amid efforts by Boebert and other Republican lawmakers to block certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory. Her rhetoric on the issue mirrored President Trump's, which has fueled baseless election conspiracy theories and resulting violence.

Off the Rails

Episode 1: A premeditated lie lit the fire

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. This Axios series takes you inside the collapse of a president.

Episode 1: Trump’s refusal to believe the election results was premeditated. He had heard about the “red mirage” — the likelihood that early vote counts would tip more Republican than the final tallies — and he decided to exploit it.

"Jared, you call the Murdochs! Jason, you call Sammon and Hemmer!”

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