Carper Statement on House Impeachment Vote

WASHINGTON, D.C.  – Today, U.S. Senator Tom Caper (D-Del.) released the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives voted to impeach President Donald J. Trump, charging him with inciting an insurrection. 

Even after losing both the popular vote and Electoral College to Joe Biden in November, Donald Trump has refused to concede that a free and fair election took place and that he lost by a clear margin. Instead, he has lied repeatedly. He peddled and embraced dangerous conspiracy theories regarding fraud and irregularities in our election. After he exhausted all of his legal options to contest the election, he still refused to concede. Instead, he summoned a mob to Washington. Words matter. Donald Trump’s misinformation about the election was the tinder, and Donald Trump’s words last Wednesday—calling on white supremacists and other extremists to march down to the Capitol and fight like hell—lit the match. Donald Trump incited an insurrection with the explicit purpose of overturning the results of a free and fair election and committing acts of violence against members of Congress and his own Vice President. Five Americans, including a U.S. Capitol Police officer, were killed during an attack on our Capitol and our democracy that was the direct result of the hateful rhetoric of Donald Trump. And, in the week that has followed, we continue to learn new and disturbing details of this attack. If this isn’t an impeachable offense, then nothing is. The House of Representatives, including 10 Republicans, sent a clear and bipartisan message by impeaching Donald Trump for the second time for his role in this heinous act of violence and betrayal of his oath. As Representative Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming), the third highest-ranking Republican in the House, said so very well, ‘None of this would have happened without the President,’ and he must be held accountable.

“To be clear, I have repeatedly called for Donald Trump’s resignation, and I have urged the Vice President and the Cabinet to remove him from office using the 25th Amendment. Resignation or the 25th Amendment would bring an immediate end to this cancerous presidency. However, Donald Trump not only refuses to resign, but continues to deny his role in fueling the unprecedented attack and domestic terrorism we saw last Wednesday. Moreover, Vice President Pence has informed Congress that he will not mobilize the Cabinet and use the 25th Amendment. Congress has been left to either do nothing at all or to hold Donald Trump accountable through impeachment. Inaction is simply not an option. Donald Trump is too dangerous to our Republic and our Constitution to remain our president. I now call on Republicans and Democrats in the United States Senate to immediately remove him from office.

“I have always believed in bringing our nation together, and I am looking forward to getting President-elect Biden’s team in place and delivering an agenda for our entire country that will speed up vaccinations for hundreds of millions of Americans, help working families across the country recover from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, address the threat of climate change, and fight for a more equal and truly just society. We owe it to our constituents to meet the unprecedented crises facing our nation with a renewed sense of urgency. But as Senators, we also took an oath to support and defend the Constitution and protect our democracy. It is an oath I have taken many times, both in uniform and as an elected official, and it is a promise to Delawareans and to the American public to do everything I can to ensure that the longest running experiment in democracy on this planet continues to shine as an example to the rest of the world. Make no mistake, I will continue to honor that oath and ensure that this president is held accountable for his actions.

 “One week from today, Joe Biden will be sworn in as our president, and I believe that, under his leadership, we will begin the process of unifying and healing our nation, and that process must be built on truth. Many of my Republican colleagues, including those who voted last Wednesday to overturn the election results that were certified in all 50 states, are suddenly calling for unity. Let me be clear: we cannot fully heal a divided nation without holding accountable those who willfully sow those divisions with lies and mistrust in our democratic institutions and elections. My Republican colleagues who are calling for national unity must first denounce the lies and conspiracies that were used to incite a violent attack on a coequal branch of government. Take responsibility and tell the American people the truth.”