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Photo: Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi wrote in a letter to members Friday that Congress will move forward with impeaching President Trump for a second time if he does not leave office "imminently and willingly."

Driving the news: House Democrats had a caucus call at noon to discuss the topic of impeachment. Assistant House Speaker Katherine Clark (D-Mass.) told CNN that Democrats could bring articles of impeachment to the House floor as soon as "mid-next week" if Vice President Pence and Cabinet members do not invoke the 25th Amendment.

Pelosi also wrote in the letter that she had reached out to Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Mark Milley to discuss preventing an "unhinged" Trump from accessing the nuclear codes.

  • "Nearly fifty years ago, after years of enabling their rogue President, Republicans in Congress finally told President Nixon that it was time to go," Pelosi wrote.
  • "Today, following the President’s dangerous and seditious acts, Republicans in Congress need to follow that example and call on Trump to depart his office – immediately."

Between the lines: Lack of time may be the only thing that saves President Trump from becoming the first U.S. president to be impeached a second time, Hill sources tell Axios.

The big picture: Republicans are openly abandoning him. Top officials are resigning. Talk is rising of a second impeachment, or removal from office via the 25th Amendment.

  • Trump's national security team has begun operating as if he weren’t the president, but rather a guy in the White House who needs to be carefully managed, Jonathan Swan reports.

So 61 days after President-elect Biden was declared the winner, Trump was spooked into the concession he never wanted to give, saying on a video last night:

  • "A new administration will be inaugurated on Jan. 20," he said, reading from a teleprompter. "My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power. This moment calls for healing and reconciliation."

Here's what implosion looks like:

  • Two of Trump's Cabinet secretaries — Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos — resigned in one day.
  • Both Speaker Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer called for Vice President Pence and members of Trump's Cabinet to remove him via the 25th Amendment.
  • Former Attorney General Bill Barr said Trump's conduct the day of the riot "was a betrayal of his office and supporters."
  • Retired four-star Marine Gen. John Kelly, Trump's former White House chief of staff, told CNN's Jake Tapper that Trump is "a laughingstock now." Tapper asked: "If you were in the Cabinet right now, would you vote to remove him from office?" Kelly hesitated a split-second, then said: "Yes, I would."
  • A Republican congressman said Trump should be removed via the 25th Amendment — Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, who said he has become “unmoored” from reality.
  • The conservative editorial page of The Wall Street Journal, run by Trump's former confidant Rupert Murdoch, calls today for Trump to resign to avoid a second impeachment: "[I]t would give Mr. Trump agency, a la Richard Nixon, over his own fate."
  • Today's USA Today editorial page: "Invoke the 25th Amendment."

The bottom line: A senior administration official tells me Trump finally conceded because he has "no friends left. He could feel it all slipping away."

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Go deeper

The week the Trump show ended

Data: NewsWhip; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Donald Trump was eclipsed in media attention last week by President Biden for the first time since Trump took office, according to viewership data on the internet, on social media and on cable news.

Why it matters: After Trump crowded out nearly every other news figure and topic for five years, momentum of the new administration took hold last week and the former president retreated, partly by choice and partly by being forced off the big platforms.

Most Senate Republicans join Rand Paul effort to dismiss Trump's 2nd impeachment trial

Photo: Joshua Roberts-Pool/Getty Images

Forty-five Senate Republicans, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, supported an effort to dismiss former President Trump's second impeachment trial.

Why it matters: The vote serves as a precursor to how senators will approach next month's impeachment trial, making it highly unlikely the Senate will vote to convict. The House impeached Trump for a second time for "incitement of insurrection" following events from Jan 6. when a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol.

Jan 26, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Hundreds of Biden staffers receive COVID vaccine

Screenshots of an email inviting White House staff to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, obtained by Alayna Treene/Axios

A week into the job, President Biden's White House medical team has administered the coronavirus vaccine to several hundred staffers — and aims to vaccinate all in-person staff over the next few weeks, officials tell Axios.

Why it matters: The new administration is ramping up steps to protect President Biden and all staff working inside the White House complex. The administration is also requiring daily employee COVID tests and N95 masks at all times.