Donald Trump’s unprecedented second impeachment trial officially kicked off on Monday evening, putting the former president’s sway over the Republican Party to a test as the Senate considers whether to convict him of instigating this month’s deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol.
The trial began with the nine House Democrats serving as the trial’s prosecutors walking the impeachment article over to the Senate chamber in a ceremonial procession through the Capitol.
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), who serves as the lead House impeachment manager, then took to the Senate floor and read the five-page article, which charges Trump with “incitement of insurrection” for egging on his supporters to storm the Capitol on Jan. 6 in a violent attempt to overturn President Biden’s election.
“President Trump gravely endangered the security of the United States and its institutions of government,”
Raskin said, reading from the article.
“He threatened the integrity of the democratic system, interfered with the peaceful transition of power and imperiled a coequal branch of Government. He thereby betrayed his trust as president, to the manifest injury of the people of the United States.”
Trump is the only president in American history to be impeached twice by the House, having first suffered the rebuke in 2019 for pressuring Ukraine’s government for political favors. He’s also the only president to face trial in the Senate after he’s out of office.