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Trump's second impeachment trial: Wednesday updates

Security video showing Vice President Mike Pence being

Security video showing Vice President Mike Pence being evacuated from the Senate chamber, is shown to senators as House impeachment manager Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) speaks during the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump on Wednesday. Credit: Senate Television via AP

What happened:

  • Democrats finished their presentation Wednesday night after seven hours. They presented security footage, social media videos, police radio calls and President Donald Trump's own tweets to argue that he stoked the flames of violence, incited the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol and failed to act quickly to send help or call his supporters off.
  • Footage shown Wednesday at the former president's second impeachment trial shows the danger members of Congress and then-Vice President Mike Pence were in during the Jan. 6 storming of the Capitol. In security footage shown publicly for the first time, Officer Eugene Goodman runs past Sen. Mitt Romney, directing him away from the mob. The Utah senator turned around and ran.
  • House impeachment managers began their opening arguments Wednesday, accusing Trump of being the "inciter in chief" of the deadly riot who spent months spreading election lies and building a mob of supporters primed for his call to stop Joe Biden's victory.
  • Read more takeaways from the trial's second day.

Wednesday updates

Democrats focus on Trump's silence during riot

House impeachment managers are focusing on Donald Trump's silence on Jan. 6 as the siege began to unfold at the U.S. Capitol last month.

Rhode Island Rep. David Cicilline, one of the prosecutors in Trump’s historic second impeachment trial, said Wednesday that the former president had a "breathtaking dereliction of duty" and violated his oath of office by failing to call off rioters.

Cicilline noted that as senators were being evacuated, Trump mistakenly called Utah Sen. Mike Lee while trying to reach Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville to discuss contesting the counting of electoral votes.

Cicilline says that while Trump did not stop the attack or address it, his phone call made clear his focus was the same as the rioters': to stop the certification of the election and transfer of power.

— The Associated Press

Videos of Capitol riot disturb Murkowski, Romney

Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Mitt Romney say they are deeply disturbed by the evidence shown by Democrats against former President Donald Trump at his second impeachment trial.

Speaking to reporters during a break Wednesday evening, Murkowski said the Democrats’ presentation was "pretty damning." She added: "I just don’t see how Donald Trump could be reelected like this to the presidency again."

Romney said he was brought to tears watching a video shown of Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman directing him away from the mob. He called the video "overwhelmingly distressing and emotional."

Both Romney and Murkowski voted to advance the impeachment trial, though impeachment managers appear far short of the minimum 17 Republican votes they would need to convict Trump.

— The Associated Press

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