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Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

President Trump called his impeachment a "political suicide march for the Democratic Party" as the House of Representatives cast two fateful votes Wednesday night.

The big picture: Trump became America's third president to be impeached after the House voted on charges of abuse of power and obstruction. But supporters remained unfazed at a rally in Battle Creek, Michigan, showing up through slushy snow wearing MAGA hats and "deplorables" gear to get a look at the president.

  • As lawmakers voted, Trump surrounded himself with thousands of supporters. "It doesn't really feel like we're being impeached," he told them confidently just before the votes.

The president's counter-programming began hours earlier. Trump sent dozens of tweets and retweets Wednesday morning laying into Democrats for what he's repeatedly called a hoax.

  • "Can you believe that I will be impeached today by the Radical Left, Do Nothing Democrats, AND I DID NOTHING WRONG! A terrible Thing. Read the Transcripts. This should never happen to another President again. Say a PRAYER!" Trump tweeted.

Trump doubled down on his impeachment defense following the vote, spending about two hours total in front of the crowd.

  • "You know, we have an election right down the road. I announced three months ago that I'm running, right? I'll give you a little clue: I announced because I figured once I announced they'd never impeach. Nobody would be so stupid," Trump said.
  • "They've been trying to impeach me from day one. They've been trying to impeach me from before I ran," he added.

Fed the vote numbers mid-speech, Trump touted the tally to the crowd, leading to sweeping cheers for Republican unity and the three Democrats who voted in the president's favor.

  • "The Republican Party has never been so affronted, but they've never been so united as they are right now," Trump said.

Between the lines: Holding on to voters in swing states like Michigan — which Trump narrowly won in 2016 — will be essential for Republicans to keep the White House in 2020.

  • Keeping the base motivated to turn out in his defense is also key to Trump's re-election strategy.

What to watch: The GOP-led Senate was poised to hold an expedited trial in January. Trump is expected to be acquitted.

  • "The President is confident the Senate will restore regular order, fairness, and due process, all of which were ignored in the House proceedings. He is prepared for the next steps and confident that he will be fully exonerated," White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Biden taps Brian Deese to lead National Economic Council

Brian Deese (L) in 2015 with special envoy for climate change Todd Stern (C) and Secretary of State John Kerry (R). Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden announced Thursday that he has selected Brian Deese, a former Obama climate aide and head of sustainable investing at BlackRock, to serve as director of the National Economic Council.

Why it matters: The influential position does not require Senate confirmation, but Deese's time working for BlackRock, the world's largest asset manager and an investor in fossil fuels, has made him a target of criticism from progressives.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
24 mins ago - Economy & Business

The places regulation does not reach

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Financial regulation is not exactly simple anywhere in the world. But one country stands out for the sheer amount of complexity and confusion in its regulatory regime — the U.S.

Why it matters: Important companies fall through the cracks, largely unregulated, while others contend with a vast array of regulatory bodies, none of which are remotely predictable.

1 hour ago - Economy & Business

Boeing gets huge 737 Max order from Ryanair, boosting hope for quick rebound

Ryanair low cost airline Boeing 737-800 aircraft as seen over the runway. Photo by Nik Oiko/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Dublin-based Ryanair said it would add 75 more planes to an existing order for Boeing's 737 Max airplanes, a giant vote of confidence as Boeing seeks to revive sales of its best-selling plane after a 20-month safety ban following two fatal crashes.

The big picture: Ryanair's big order, on the heels of breakthrough vaccine news, is also a promising sign that the devastated airline industry might recover from the global pandemic sooner than expected.