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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), while making his case against impeaching President Trump for a second time on Wednesday, noted that Trump "bears responsibility" for a mob of his supporters breaching the U.S. Capitol last week.

Why it matters: The core accusation of House Democrats in their article of impeachment against Trump is that he incited insurrection against the U.S. government by urging his supporters to breach the U.S. Capitol.

Between the lines: McCarthy, who has personally tied himself to Trump more than any other Republican leader during the last four years, has been under siege as some members of his caucus break ranks with the president following the Capitol siege, Axios' Alayna Treene reports.

What he's saying: "The president bears responsibility for Wednesday’s attack on Congress by mob rioters. He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding."

  • "These facts require immediate actions by President Trump. Accept his share of responsibility. Quell the brewing unrest."

What he's saying: "I believe impeaching the president in such a short timeframe would be a mistake," he told his colleagues. "No investigations have been completed. No hearings have been held."

  • "What’s more, the Senate has confirmed that no trial will begin until after President-elect Biden is sworn in."

The bottom line: McCarthy also pushed back against a false claim invoked by some of Trump's supporters in Congress, saying: "Some say the riots were caused by Antifa. There is absolutely no evidence of that. And conservatives should be the first to say so."

Go deeper

10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Biden on Trump's impeachment trial: "I think it has to happen"

President Biden told CNN Monday that he believes the impeachment trial of former President Trump "has to happen," but he does not think 17 Republicans will join Democrats to vote to convict.

Why it matters: Biden's comments are most concrete he has made about his views on Trump's second impeachment.

11 hours ago - Politics & Policy

House delivers article of impeachment against Trump to Senate

House Impeachment managers accompany the formal article of impeachment as they walk through the Rotunda to deliver them to the U.S. Senate. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

House managers on Monday delivered the article of impeachment against former President Trump for "incitement of insurrection" to the Senate.

Why it matters: The expected move formally triggers preparations for the trial. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced last week that the trial will begin the week of Feb. 8.

Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy to preside over Trump's second impeachment trial

Sen. Patrick Leahy heads to the Senate floor on Nov. 9. Photo: Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is expected to preside over former President Trump's second impeachment trial, a Senate source tells Axios. CNN first reported Leahy's role.

Why it matters: The Constitution requires the chief justice of the Supreme Court to preside over a sitting president's impeachment trial rather than the vice president — who has the title of president of the Senate — to avoid a potential conflict of interest. However, there is no precedent for a former president.