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McConnell, assessing the impeachment vote, said the mob that attacked the Capitol was “provoked by the president.”

Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, said on Tuesday that the insurgents who stormed the Capitol on January 6 were “provoked by the President and other powerful people,” publicly declaring for the first time that he held President Trump at least partially responsible. for the assault.

“The crowd has been fed lies,” said Mr. McConnell, referring to Mr. Trump’s attempts to annul the election based on false allegations of voter fraud. “They were provoked by the president and other powerful people. And they tried to use fear and violence to stop a specific proceeding from the first branch of the federal government that they didn’t like.

Mr McConnell made the remarks on his last full day as Majority Leader, speaking on the eve of President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s inauguration and as the Senate prepared to receive a single article of impeachment from the House accusing M. Trump with “incitement to insurgency”.

The Kentucky Republican has said privately that he believes Mr Trump has committed attributable offenses, but said he has yet to decide to vote to convict the president, and many senators in his party are waiting. a sign from Mr. McConnell before making their own judgments. It would take 17 Republicans joining the 50 Democrats to find the president guilty, which would allow the Senate to hold a second vote to disqualify Mr. Trump from public office in the future.

Mr McConnell’s remarks came hours before he was ready to meet with his Democratic counterpart, Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, to develop a set of rules for the trial and the next Senate session, when the chamber will be divided 50 -50 between the parties. Democrats will remain in control because Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will have the power to sever ties with the Senate, but Mr Schumer will need at least some cooperation from Mr McConnell to lead the chamber and move the issues forward. things.

On impeachment, the Republican leader appeared to take a much different stance than he did a year ago when the Senate first tried Mr. Trump. Next, Mr. McConnell acted at the request of the White House to establish trial rules that would favor acquittal. Now he has told his allies he hopes to never speak to Mr. Trump again and is doing nothing to persuade senators to support him, instead calling the impeachment vote a matter of conscience.

But as Democrats take unified control of Washington, he warned them that pursuing a partisan agenda would come at their own political risk.

“The November election certainly did not give either side a mandate to radically change ideology,” said McConnell. “Our marching orders from the American people are clear: we need to have a solid discussion and seek common ground. We need to seek bipartisan agreement wherever we can, and respectfully verify and balance ourselves where we need to.

Speaking after Mr McConnell, Mr Schumer stressed that the Senate would proceed down three thorny tracks at once, calling a trial at the same time Democrats attempt to confirm nominees for Mr Biden’s cabinet and start drafting a additional coronavirus relief bill.

Although some Democrats expressed concern that Mr. Trump’s trial would eclipse Mr. Biden’s opening days in office, Mr. Schumer insisted that a trial was needed to eliminate the risk of Mr. Trump could continue to present for the country, even outside of office.

“He will continue to spread lies about the election and stoke the grievances of his most radical supporters, using the prospect of a future presidential race to poison the public arena at a time when we have to do so much.” , said Mr. Schumer.

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McConnell, assessing the impeachment vote, said the mob that attacked the Capitol was “provoked by the president.”

Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, said on Tuesday that the insurgents who stormed the Capitol on January 6 were “provoked by the President and other powerful people,” publicly declaring for the first time that he held President Trump at least partially responsible. for the assault.

“The crowd has been fed lies,” said Mr. McConnell, referring to Mr. Trump’s attempts to annul the election based on false allegations of voter fraud. “They were provoked by the president and other powerful people. And they tried to use fear and violence to stop a specific proceeding from the first branch of the federal government that they didn’t like.

Mr McConnell made the remarks on his last full day as Majority Leader, speaking on the eve of President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s inauguration and as the Senate prepared to receive a single article of impeachment from the House accusing M. Trump with “incitement to insurgency”.

The Kentucky Republican has said privately that he believes Mr Trump has committed attributable offenses, but said he has yet to decide to vote to convict the president, and many senators in his party are waiting. a sign from Mr. McConnell before making their own judgments. It would take 17 Republicans joining the 50 Democrats to find the president guilty, which would allow the Senate to hold a second vote to disqualify Mr. Trump from public office in the future.

Mr McConnell’s remarks came hours before he was ready to meet with his Democratic counterpart, Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, to develop a set of rules for the trial and the next Senate session, when the chamber will be divided 50 -50 between the parties. Democrats will remain in control because Vice President-elect Kamala Harris will have the power to sever ties with the Senate, but Mr Schumer will need at least some cooperation from Mr McConnell to lead the chamber and move the issues forward. things.

On impeachment, the Republican leader appeared to take a much different stance than he did a year ago when the Senate first tried Mr. Trump. Next, Mr. McConnell acted at the request of the White House to establish trial rules that would favor acquittal. Now he has told his allies he hopes to never speak to Mr. Trump again and is doing nothing to persuade senators to support him, instead calling the impeachment vote a matter of conscience.

But as Democrats take unified control of Washington, he warned them that pursuing a partisan agenda would come at their own political risk.

“The November election certainly did not give either side a mandate to radically change ideology,” said McConnell. “Our marching orders from the American people are clear: we need to have a solid discussion and seek common ground. We need to seek bipartisan agreement wherever we can, and respectfully verify and balance ourselves where we need to.

Speaking after Mr McConnell, Mr Schumer stressed that the Senate would proceed down three thorny tracks at once, calling a trial at the same time Democrats attempt to confirm nominees for Mr Biden’s cabinet and start drafting a additional coronavirus relief bill.

Although some Democrats expressed concern that Mr. Trump’s trial would eclipse Mr. Biden’s opening days in office, Mr. Schumer insisted that a trial was needed to eliminate the risk of Mr. Trump could continue to present for the country, even outside of office.

“He will continue to spread lies about the election and stoke the grievances of his most radical supporters, using the prospect of a future presidential race to poison the public arena at a time when we have to do so much.” , said Mr. Schumer.

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Giuliani will not be part of Trump’s defense in the Senate impeachment trial.

President Trump’s personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani will not participate in the president’s defense during the Senate trial for his second indictment, a person close to Mr. Trump said on Monday.

Mr. Trump met Mr. Giuliani on Saturday night at the White House, and the next day the president started telling people that Mr. Giuliani was not going to be on the team. It is unclear who will be Mr Trump’s defense attorney, given that many lawyers have said privately that they will not represent him.

Mr. Giuliani himself first said he was participating in the trial, and then a day later was not involved.

He told ABC News on Sunday that he would not be part of the defense, noting that he has been a potential witness since he gave a speech at the Jan.6 rally of Trump supporters who stormed the Capitol complex, overtaking it for hours.

Yet a day earlier, Mr. Giuliani told ABC News that he would in fact be involved in the impeachment defense and left open the possibility of Mr. Trump showing up for trial. This interview infuriated Trump’s advisers and was a bridge too far for the president himself, according to the person close to the president, who described personal conversations on condition of anonymity.

While the president has a decades-long relationship with Mr. Giuliani, Mr. Trump’s advisers blame him for the events surrounding the two indictments the president has faced.

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Video: Impeachment officials ready for Senate trial, Pelosi says

Justice is needed as we approach the act of insurgency that was perpetrated against the Capitol complex last week. At present, our managers are preparing solemnly and in prayer for the trial, which they will take to the Senate. A week ago, on January 6, an act of insurgency was carried out on the United States Capitol, motivated by the President of the United States. A week later, from Wednesday to Wednesday, this president was deposed in a bipartisan manner by the House of Representatives. The question was so urgent. They’re working on – they’re putting it on trial now, and when they are, you’ll be the first to know when we announce we’re going there. In just five days, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be sworn in as President and Vice President of the United States. Following last week’s attack on the Capitol complex, there was an unprecedented security mobilization on the Capitol. I want to express my gratitude to our Capitol Police, the National Guard, who are here to protect our democracy. We need to put this whole complex under scrutiny in light of what has happened and the fact that the grand opening is imminent. To that end, I have asked retired Lieutenant-General Russel Honoré to lead an immediate review of security, infrastructure, interagency processes, and command and control.

.

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Impeachment briefing: Republicans divided

My colleague Catie Edmondson, who covers Congress, wrote today about Rep. Liz Cheney, the 3rd Republican and one of 10 in her party to vote to impeach the president. A group of Mr. Trump’s most staunch allies in the House are now calling on him to step down from his leadership position.

Ms Cheney dismissed calls to resign, saying she was “going nowhere” and calling her break-up with Mr Trump “a vote of conscience.” She released a scathing statement the day before the impeachment vote in which she said: “There has never been a greater betrayal by a President of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution.”

Catie wrote that Republicans are scrambling to determine the political consequences of breaking up with Mr. Trump after four years of loyalty, and whether they would pay a higher political price for breaking up with the president – or for not doing so. . A yes vote on Wednesday had little short-term political advantage for Republicans, Catie told me.

“The House is where you find Trump’s strongest supporters, and their argument is that they have to hang on to Trump and his brand,” she said. “It is lawmakers who are now calling on Liz Cheney to step down from her leadership position. In the middle of the conference, you have a large number of lawmakers who are unsure of where to turn. “

Catie described the fault lines in the House Republican caucus as more distinct than those among Senate Republicans, pitting establishment conservatives against MAGA conservatives who view most political issues as referendums on the rise or down on Mr. Trump. This contest became clearer this week. Some of the 10 Republicans who voted for impeachment were veterans who had “created a bipartisan, centrist brand in their districts, like Fred Upton and John Katko,” Catie said. Others, like freshman Conservatives Peter Meijer and Anthony Gonzalez, used the impeachment vote to make a point early in their careers.

“For a while, they were able to live together in harmony, even though there have always been these tensions. Their position was that Trump could defy political gravity and be a strong enemy, and they didn’t have to question the full membership strategy, ”Catie said of dueling groups. “After the riot it became a question of choosing a path, and there are a lot of lawmakers who don’t know what to choose because they don’t know which is the safest path politically.”


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Murkowski signals that she is ready to condemn Trump as the timing of the Senate impeachment trial remains uncertain.

Alaskan Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski said Thursday the House acted “appropriately” in impeaching President Trump, signaling possible support for his conviction during a Senate trial in a statement calling his actions a ‘Illegal’ and declaring that they warrant consequences. .

Ms Murkowski said Mr Trump’s second indictment was “in stark contrast” to the first, which she and virtually all other Republicans opposed. She said that Mr. Trump had perpetuated “false rhetoric that the election was stolen and rigged” and launched a “campaign of pressure against his own vice president, urging him to take action he did not want. ‘had no authority to do’.

And while the Alaskan Republican has not pledged to find the president guilty, saying she will listen carefully to arguments on both sides, she has strongly suggested that she is inclined to do so.

“On the day of the riots, President Trump’s words incited violence, which resulted in injuries and deaths of Americans – including a Capitol Police officer – the desecration of the Capitol, and briefly interfered with the ability government to ensure a peaceful transfer of power. ”Ms. Murkowski said.

His remarks came the day after the House – backed by 10 Republicans – impeached the president on a single charge of “inciting insurgency,” and as Republicans faced the prospect of a trial which could start as early as next week.

Republicans were rushing to gauge the political dynamics of a vote to condemn Mr. Trump, which would open the door to disqualifying him from his post in the future. Most of them kept their powder dry publicly, but struggled privately to reconcile their own contempt for the leader they loyally supported for years with their fear of a reaction from a more dedicated political base to Mr. Trump. than any other party personality.

Although few Republicans have been recorded on such scathing terms, Ms Murkowski was not the only one to break with the president. Senators Mitt Romney of Utah, Ben Sasse of Nebraska, Patrick J. Toomey of Pennsylvania and Susan Collins of Maine had spoken out harshly against Mr. Trump, leaving colleagues to think they might vote to condemn him and prevent him from resuming his duties.

Even Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Republican leader, told his colleagues he was undecided on whether to convict Mr. Trump, and privately told advisers he approved of the impeachment campaign and believed that it could help the party purge Mr. Trump.

Other party members, led by Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, strongly rejected a conviction, warning it would harm the party and the country, as federal officials warned of continued violent threats from the pro-Trump extremists.

With Mr McConnell sending mixed signals on where he would go down, Republican strategists and Capitol Hill senior aides believed he might ultimately change the outcome one way or another. If all senators voted, it would take 17 Republicans joining all Democrats to condemn Mr. Trump. If they did, it would only take a simple majority vote of senators to disqualify Mr. Trump from ever returning to office.

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Cheney faces an internal backlash for the impeachment vote as Republican divisions deepen over Trump.

A group of President Trump’s most staunch allies in the House calls on Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the third Republican, to step down from her leadership post after she votes to impeach Mr. Trump, dramatizing bitter divisions within the party a messy internal feud that could define his future.

Members of the ultra-conservative Freedom Caucus, including the chairman, Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona, as well as Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio and Matt Gaetz of Florida, are circulating a petition calling on Ms. Cheney to resign her post. role as Speaker of the House Republican Conference, saying her vote to impeach Mr. Trump had “discredited the conference and caused discord.”

Ms Cheney was one of 10 Republicans to break with the party on Wednesday and vote to indict the president of “inciting insurgency” for his role in urging a crowd that stormed the Capitol.

“One of those 10 can’t be our leader,” Gaetz said in an interview with Fox News’ “Hannity” Wednesday night. “It’s untenable, unsustainable, and we have to make a change in leadership.”

Ms Cheney dismissed calls to resign, saying she was “going nowhere” and calling her break-up with Mr Trump “a vote of conscience.” Several Republicans, including some members of the Freedom Caucus, began to circle the carts around her.

Other party members who have criticized the president have also rushed to his defense.

“Liz has more support now than two days ago,” said Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, who also voted to impeach Mr. Trump. “She has earned immeasurable respect.”

Mr Kinzinger suggested that it is Republicans like Mr Jordan who should be sidelined in the wake of the siege and the impeachment it brought about.

“Since the discussion is open, however, we may also have to have a discussion about who in our party instigated this, and their roles as high-ranking members,” he said.

The debate over Ms. Cheney’s leadership reflects the Republican Party’s deep divides over Mr. Trump, which demanded full loyalty from his party and, until recently, received it widely.

While prominent figures have backed down from Mr. Trump’s inflammatory policies in the wake of the January 6 riot, fearing it could ruin their party, a large minority faction – many in the House – remains reluctant to do so. to abandon. . Republicans are scrambling to determine the political consequences of doing so and whether they would pay a higher political price for breaking up with the president or for not doing so.

Senate Republicans face such a dilemma as they consider voting in an impeachment trial that could begin as early as next week.

Both representatives Kevin McCarthy of California, the minority leader, and Steve Scalise of Louisiana, the minority whip, voted against the impeachment of Mr. Trump, although Mr. McCarthy said the president was responsible for the sits and deserved censorship.

Ms Cheney, on the other hand, had issued a scathing statement the day before the impeachment vote in which she said: “There has never been a greater betrayal by a President of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution.”

But she chose not to speak during the debate in the House. Many Democrats – who have long insulted her and her father, former Vice President Dick Cheney – have cited her with approval in their own speeches.

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A historic impeachment and a great choice for the Senate

Trump is impeached – again – but a Senate trial seems far away. In the meantime, the authorities are preparing for a day of resentful inauguration. It’s Thursday, and here’s your policy tip sheet. register here to get On Politics delivered to your inbox every day of the week.

President Nancy Pelosi oversaw the vote to impeach Trump yesterday.


Before the storming of the Capitol by rioting Trump supporters encouraged by the president himself, before President Trump claimed the November election was rigged, before the summer of racial unrest the president has used to promote his demagoguery, and before the coronavirus pandemic hits American shores. , the scandalous news that hit the country was the impeachment of Trump. But this outrage was highly polarized.

Democratic voters and lawmakers (as well as some generally non-partisan officials) angrily demanded the president’s impeachment based on their claim that Trump violated his oath by bribing a foreign official to publicly order a corruption investigation damaging on Trump’s opponent. Republican voters and lawmakers have said the multistep argument is convoluted and hypocritical in light of the recent history of Democrats sponsoring international opposition research efforts, like the infamous Steele dossier.

This time, however, it is different. In an opinion piece published on Wednesday, Steven G. Calabresi, Republican and professor at the Pritzker School of Law at Northwestern University, argues with Norman Eisen, Democrat and Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, for a bipartisan approach to impeachment, rooted in the protection of democracy.

They write: “We have considerable political differences. But we strongly share a point of view that should transcend partisan politics: President Trump must be arraigned and tried again as soon as possible in the Senate, either before or after inauguration day on January 20. against his own vice-president, the Senate and the House of Representatives, and put pressure on the Georgian Secretary of State to “find” enough votes so that he can overturn the legitimate election result.

Reports have revealed that Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, will not lobby against the president’s impeachment. While Trump’s impeachment before inauguration day is highly unlikely, Eisen and Calabresi’s hope of a historic, interdisciplinary condemnation of the president may in fact become a reality.


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After the crackdown on social media, the organizers of the attack on the Capitol have spread to the darkest corners of the internet. Will this reduce the risk of violence or make it more difficult to prevent? Listen to “The Daily. “

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‘The most bipartisan impeachment’

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Even during a scandal, members of a president’s party usually defend him. Decades later, people tend to forget how overwhelming partisan support was and overstate the level of awareness of politicians of the past.

  • In 1999, no Senate Democrat voted to convict Bill Clinton in his impeachment trial. Many Democrats have made excuses for her affair with a 22-year-old White House intern, and some have gone so far as to smear her.

  • In the 1970s, Republican leaders spent months viewing the Nixon administration investigations as a partisan overthrow. Gerald Ford, while still the House leader of the Republicans, called the Watergate investigation a “political witch hunt.” Ronald Reagan and George HW Bush defended Nixon and his corrupt vice president Spiro Agnew.

  • In the 1860s, Andrew Johnson’s Democratic comrades strongly supported him during his impeachment and prevented him from being sentenced.

All of this helps put President Trump’s second indictment yesterday into perspective: It was both a particularly partisan affair – and an exceptionally bipartisan affair.

On the one hand, dozens of members of Congress refused to break up with a president who was trying to overturn an election result and incited a mob to attack Congress, killing a policeman. Only 10 House Republicans voted for impeachment, and the final total was 232 to 197.

“Political sanctions to encourage extremism and attack democratic norms are dangerously weak,” political scientist Brendan Nyhan wrote yesterday.

On the flip side, Trump suffered more defections from his party than any previous president except Nixon, who ultimately lost Republican support and resigned before the House could impeach him. Yesterday’s vote, Daniel Nichanian of the Call wrote, was “the most bipartisan indictment of a president in the history of the United States.”

By comparison, only five House Democrats voted to impeach Clinton, the Times’ Carl Hulse noted – three of whom later became Republicans, while a fourth joined the George W. Bush administration. In 2019, not a single House Republican voted to impeach Trump. Only one Republican senator, Mitt Romney, voted to condemn, and other Republicans scorned the process from the start.

This time, they send a more nuanced message. Mitch McConnell, the Republican Leader of the Senate, has said he is happy the impeachment is happening, and he released a statement yesterday saying he had “not made a final decision on how I will vote” in the Senate trial.

Of course, McConnell is a cunning politician who would both like to get rid of Trump and stop President-elect Joe Biden from passing a lot of laws. So McConnell also signaled yesterday that he would not start a Senate trial until Biden takes office, effectively forcing Democrats to choose between trying Trump and focusing on Biden’s agenda.

The delay seems to make conviction less likely. “People’s outrage levels are dropping,” my colleague Maggie Haberman wrote yesterday. “Memories fade. And I wonder if there will be as much Republican anger in the Senate next month as there is today.

Yet the existence of this anger underscores the historic nature of yesterday. Trump became the first president in U.S. history to be impeached twice – and only the second to have a significant number of his party members in Congress deem him unfit to be president.

The 10 Republicans who voted for impeachment included Liz Cheney of Wyoming, Republican No. 3 in the House; four more from safe Republican seats; and five from more competitive districts.

“I’m not afraid of losing my job, but I’m afraid my country will fail,” said Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington, who is in his sixth term. “My vote to remove our incumbent president is not a decision based on fear. I do not choose a side. I choose the truth.

  • A team from the World Health Organization has arrived in Wuhan to investigate the source of the virus. Chinese authorities have banned two scientists because of positive antibody tests.

  • States in the United States are struggling to meet the growing demand for vaccines. Here is the new guidance on who gets a photo.

  • Prosecutors have charged Rick Snyder, the former Michigan governor, with willful neglect of his duty during the Flint Crisis that left thousands of residents drinking lead-tainted water.

  • Gunmen killed at least 80 people in an ethnically-based massacre in Ethiopia.

Letter of recommendation: Eat crisps, writes Sam Anderson of The Times. “A bag of crisps is a way to beat time. It brings a temporary infinity: a feeling that it will never end. A chip. A chip. A chip. Another chip.

From the review: Farhad Manjoo, Nicholas Kristof and Thomas B. Edsall have columns.

Lives lived: Adolfo Quiñones, better known as Shabba-Doo, grew up in a social housing project in Chicago and became a pioneer in street dancing. He called it “a valid art form, on a par with jazz or ballet.” He died at 65.

The pandemic has been very good for the video game industry. Gambling spending increased 22% last year, reports the Washington Post. The number of monthly users on Discord, a chat platform popular with gamers, doubled to 140 million.

But the boom isn’t just about the pandemic. It’s bigger than that, argues Sean Monahan in The Guardian: Video games are replacing music as the dominant form of youth culture.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Joe Biden turned to Among Us and Animal Crossing: New Horizons to reach out to young voters. Rapper Travis Scott had over 12 million viewers for a virtual gig on Fortnite last year – nearly double the audience for the 2020 MTV Video Music Awards. “We’re going to see more of these events, even after the regular concerts are safe again, ”an analyst told The Hollywood Reporter.

Much of the cultural influence of games stems from interaction. Games like Animal Crossing have become places for socializing and even hosting virtual diplomas, parties or events.

“Ten years ago, the younger generations were abandoning traditional media for social media,” another analyst wrote in a report on the global games market 2020. “Today they are abandoning social media for more experiences. interactive. “

Yesterday’s Spelling Bee pangram was formula. Today’s puzzle is above – or you can play it online if you have a Games membership.

Here are today’s mini crosswords and a hint: like lettuce and kale (five letters).


Thanks for spending part of your morning with The Times. See you tomorrow. – David

PS The word ‘waackin’ ‘- one of Adolfo Quiñones’ techniques – first appeared in The Times yesterday, as the Twitter bot noted @NYT_first_said.

You can see the first printed page of the day here.

Today’s episode of “The Daily” is about Trump’s second indictment. A bonus episode of “The Argument” discusses the future of online speech.

Claire Moses, Ian Prasad Philbrick, Tom Wright-Piersanti and Sanam Yar have contributed to The Morning. You can join the team at themorning@nytimes.com.

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Inside the Capitol for the impeachment: the national guard in every corner

WASHINGTON – They slept on the marble floors, lined up for coffee in the 24-hour snack bar, and marveled at the marble resemblances of the nation’s founders in the Rotunda and Statuary Hall. They took pictures with their phones, ate pizza and sometimes played cards, their M4 rifles by their side.

Crowds of armed, camouflage-clad members of the National Guard surrounded the Capitol and lined its hallways on Wednesday, weapons, helmets and backpacks seemingly stacked in every corner of the complex. The heavily militarized presence provided a shocking and disappointing backdrop to the House chamber as a majority of lawmakers moved to impeach a sitting U.S. president for inciting an insurgency on the nation’s Capitol.

It brought to mind reminders of rioters who a week earlier stormed the complex as its terrified occupants took refuge in the House’s boarded up chamber and secure areas across the Capitol – and the recriminations that remained ahead President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. inauguration.

“It has no place here,” said Representative Elaine Luria, a Democrat from Virginia and a veteran who served 20 years in the Navy, of the military presence in the building. “It’s something that’s out of place.”

“I hate the idea that we are going to change in a way, be more difficult, more difficult or more cumbersome for people to come and enjoy the historic monument than it is because of what happened last week” , she added.

Much like lawmakers, aides and reporters still exchanging accounts of where they stood during the siege of Trump supporters, Capitol Hill on Wednesday appeared to be torn between caring for the open wounds left by deadly riots and the need to lay the foundation for healing. under new administration.

Capitol workers have worked feverishly in recent days to complete preparations for the Jan. 20 inauguration – hanging blue curtains over the entrance to the rotunda and brushing dust off the statues – among reminders of the violence. Windows remained shattered and cracked in parts of the Capitol and two holes were left in the entrance to the office of President Nancy Pelosi of California after rioters stole her embossed wooden plaque.

First-year lawmakers gave their first speech on whether to charge President Trump with serious crimes and misdemeanors for inciting insurgency. After a majority in the House voted to impeach Mr Trump, Ms Pelosi spoke from the same pulpit that a Trump loyalist was pictured walking happily across the Capitol.

“I don’t have enough adjectives to describe how disgusted I am with what happened and how far we are – it’s sad, it’s disgusting, it’s sad,” a said Rep. Brian Mast, Republican of Florida. A veteran of the army who lost his legs while serving in Afghanistan, he gave a tour of the Rotunda to members of the Guard as a thank you for their service. (Mr. Mast also voted to overturn the results in Arizona and Pennsylvania, and expressed no regrets about those votes. He was not among 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Mr. Trump.)

Some lawmakers lamented the threat that made the military presence necessary, with many Democrats angered at the role they said their own Republican colleagues played in stoking the rage of the mob that attacked the Capitol, putting the life of legislators in danger.

“This should not and will not be tolerated,” Representative Hakeem Jeffries, Democrat of New York, told reporters. “And that is why extraordinary security measures have been taken.”

In part in response to concerns about Republicans bringing guns upstairs to the House, new magnetometers were installed outside the chamber doors, a security measure that was difficult for several lawmakers. Usually allowed to bypass magnetometers at building entrances, several Republicans grumbled about the added level of security and some insisted on repelling the police despite the alarm going off.

“You are taking precious resources completely away from where they need to be without any consultation, and you have done so without any consultation with the minority,” said Representative Rodney Davis of Illinois, the most Republican of the committee on Tuesday. administration of the House. to Representative Steny H. Hoyer of Maryland, Majority Leader. With several people testing positive for the coronavirus after taking refuge in a room with Republicans without masks, Democrats have also imposed a system of fines for refusing to wear a mask on the bedroom floor.

The magnetometers and heightened security were a little comfort during Mr Trump’s impeachment vote as several lawmakers were still shaken and questioned whether it was possible to attend the inauguration safely. Ms Pelosi said on Wednesday the House would vote this month on a rule change that would impose a system of fines for refusing to adhere to the new security protocols, deducting $ 5,000 and $ 10,000 from pay deputies for the first and second offenses.

“What we’re dealing with now is fighting an insurgency so I feel like it’s all upside down,” said Rep. Colin Allred, Democrat from Texas, who recalls whipping his jacket on the floor of the House and prepare to defend his colleagues against the rioters. . “Seeing the National Guards sleeping in the hallways, having the necessary protection to have metal detectors set up to go on the floor of the House – I know the word ‘unprecedented’ is used a lot, but it’s unprecedented. And it’s also so sad, so sad.

“It’s meant to be open,” added Mr. Allred of the Capitol. “It’s a museum, it’s a place where ordinary Americans should feel like they can come and see the work of government.”

But while it is home to both artefacts from American history and those in the highest office of American democracy, the Capitol complex is ordinarily an accessible fortress. But with tourists banned as a way to stop the spread of the coronavirus, the presence of hundreds of armed soldiers was even more disconcerting after months of nearly empty hallways.

Several soldiers craning their necks to look at the paintings and sculptures carved into the ceiling of the rotunda said they had never been to the Capitol, even as tourists. Their colleagues could be seen dozing in another room next to a plaque commemorating the troops stationed in the Capitol in 1861, at Statuary Hall, and a small group posed for a photo with the Rosa Parks statue.

John ismay and Luke broadwater contribution to reports.