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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.

Go deeper

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

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.

Sen. Leahy back home after being hospitalized

Sen. Patrick Leahy inside the Capitol Rotunda on Jan. 25. Photo: J. Scott Applewhite-Pool/Getty Images

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) left the Washington, D.C., hospital he was taken to for evaluation on Tuesday and has returned home, his spokesperson David Carle confirmed.

Why it matters: The 80-year-old is president pro tempore of the Senate and is expected to preside over former President Trump's second impeachment trial, for which proceedings are set to begin the week of Feb. 8.