After the extraordinary scenes of rioting by a Trump supporting mob that actually invaded the halls of Congress forcing all its members to evacuate until the mob was cleared out and the certification of Joe Biden was allowed to continue, the question is what comes next?
Here is a short video of the invasion
The ransacked office of the Senate Parliamentarian: pic.twitter.com/E7PsSgoAEX
— Ali Zaslav (@alizaslav) January 7, 2021
DC Police saying in live update that they have made 52 arrests.
Yes, only 52.
They also recovered pipe bombs both at the RNC and the DNC and found a vehicle on Capitol grounds with a long gun and molotov cocktails.
— Heather Caygle (@heatherscope) January 7, 2021
There have been calls to immediately impeach Trump and remove him from office. There have also been calls to invoke the 25th Amendment and have the cabinet remove Trump under Section 4 of the 25th Amendment.
Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.
Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty-eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty-one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty-one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two-thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.
Somehow, I cannot see the bunch of Trump toadies that make up his cabinet doing anything so daring. Ben Carson? Betsy DeVos? Sonny Perdue? Wilbur Ross? Mike Pompeo? Nah. These are all gutless losers who between them cannot collectively make up a spine.
I am not doubtful that anything will come of these moves to get rid of Trump immediately, though I would be pleased to be proven wrong. Republicans are too cowardly to do anything that might alienate Trump’s cult mob. They will say that we might as well wait since he will be out of office in two weeks anyway. Republicans will huff and puff for a short while before they go back to their usual position of justifying the extremists, such as Republican congressperson Rep. Matt Gaetz who has already blamed the riot on antifa.
Matt Gaetz is on the House floor now blaming antifa for the riots on the Capitol, to applause. Just in case there was question about today fundamentally changing things for House Republicans.
— Matt Berman (@Mr_Berman) January 7, 2021
After creating the kindling with his rhetoric, Trump lit the fire by telling the mob to march to the Capitol building and then went into hiding as is his cowardly practice. But you can expect Trump to say something similar to Gaetz when he eventually comes out of his bunker and then others will parrot it.
Meanwhile, you can be sure that those Republicans who have presidential ambitions (Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, and the rest) or who face difficult elections in 2022 spent tast night carefully calibrating what they should say today, where they try to distance themselves from the riot without angering the mob.
Mitt Romney, who has little to lose, and a few others have been harsh in their criticism of Trump.
Romney: "What happened here today was an insurrection. Incited by the president of the United States." He says this was a "legitimate democratic election" and those who keep objecting "will forever be seen as being complicit in an unprecedented attack against our democracy."
— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) January 7, 2021
There have been some resignations of low-level staffers, such as White House social secretary Rickie Niceta and deputy press secretary Sarah Matthews. There have been rumors that more senior people such as national security adviser Robert O’Brien and his deputy Matthew Pottinger are considering resigning too.
One of the few good things was that congressional staffers rescued the boxes containing the Electoral College votes. You c an be sure that if the mob got hold of it, they would have gleefully destroyed them. Although that would have been a futile gesture that merely delayed things, they would have declared that to be a major victory. The right wing nuttersphere is apparently posting the photos of the mob roaming through the halls and chambers of Congress as a great victory
Electoral college ballots rescued from the Senate floor. If our capable floor staff hadn’t grabbed them, they would have been burned by the mob. pic.twitter.com/2JCauUIlvg
— Senator Jeff Merkley (@SenJeffMerkley) January 6, 2021