US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has stated that the mob that attacked the Capitol was “provoked” by President Donald Trump, placing part of the responsibility on him for the deadly riot, as the Senate prepares for an impeachment trial on whether to convict the President for “incitement of insurrection” which might disqualify him from holding political office in the future.
The Senate Republican leader rarely broke from Trump in his four years as president, but after Biden’s win went against the outgoing president when he stated that Biden had won the election and led the Senate’s certification of the presidential election that the rioters pledged to overturn.
In the aftermath of the mob riot, the senator who rarely speaks publicly, strongly condemned the violence at the Capitol.
“The mob was fed lies,” McConnell, a Kentucky Republican who has served as a senator for 36 years said Tuesday, January 19, on the Senate floor.
“They were provoked by the President and other powerful people.”
The Senate Republican leader has not yet said whether he will vote to convict after the evidence is presented in the upcoming trial.
“We’ll have a safe and successful inaugural right here on the very front of the Capitol,” said McConnell.
McConnell’s comments came as the Senate prepares to hold an impeachment trial over the House’s charge of “incitement of insurrection.”
McConnell said on Tuesday that the Senate has received a message from the House that Trump has been impeached but noted that the House has not yet transmitted the article of impeachments to the Senate.
Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer added;
“We need to set a precedent that the severest offense ever committed by a President will be met by the severest remedy provided by the Constitution — Impeachment and conviction by this chamber as well as disbarment from future office,” Schumer said.
McConnell then added that that no party has a broad mandate after the 2020 elections, which flipped the White House and Republican-led Senate to the Democrats.
“Certainly November’s elections did not hand any side a mandate for sweeping ideological change,” said McConnell.
“Americans elected a closely divided Senate, a closely divided House and a presidential candidate who said he’d represent everyone.”
“So our marching orders from the American people are clear,” said McConnell.
“We’re to have a robust discussion and seek common ground. We are to pursue bipartisan agreement everywhere we can, and check and balance one another, respectfully, where we must.”