Trump gives statement on violence as House moves to impeach him
Donald Trump gave a statement to Fox News claiming he did not stand for violence and asking Americans to help “calm tempers.”
“In light of reports of more demonstrations, I urge that there must be NO violence, NO lawbreaking and NO vandalism of any kind,” Mr Trump said. “That is not what I stand for and it is not what America stands for. I call on ALL Americans to help ease tensions and calm tempers. Thank You.”
He also called on “Big Tech” companies like Facebook and Twitter to help with the “peaceful transition” of power next week.
At the same time Mr Trump was giving his remarks, House Democrats were debating whether or not to impeach Mr Trump for a second time.
Democrats are confident they have the votes to impeach Mr Trump, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell denied a request to call Senate into session in order to hold an impeachment trial.
That means that Mr Trump – if he is impeached – would not be tried until after Joe Biden’s inauguration.
An adviser to Mr Trump told Fox News that the president wanted Americans to “join with him” to ensure a peaceful transfer of power to Mr Biden next week.
“President Trump is asking all Americans to join with him in ensuring that there is an orderly and peaceful transition next week,” the adviser said. “President Trump is also asking that Big Tech companies join with him in this effort.”
Mr Trump’s statements come a day after he made his first public appearance since his supporters attacked the US Capitol. He told reporters he wanted “no violence.”
The insurrection at the Capitol left five people dead, including a Capitol Police officer.
The Capitol Police briefed Democrats earlier in the week on three suspected plots to attack the Capitol again sometime next week.
One of the demonstrations called for armed militia members to surround the White House in order to protect Mr Trump, to surround the Supreme Court and effectively shut it down, and to surround the House to keep Democrats out of legislative chambers – possibly by killing them – and allowing only Republicans to run the country.