Christie agrees Trump should be impeached for inciting violence
Former Gov. Chris Christie has stepped up his criticism of President Donald Trump, saying he thinks his longtime friend should be impeached for a second time during his one-term in the White House, for inciting the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.
Among several deaths linked to the chaos was a Capitol police officer originally from Middlesex County, who died from injuries suffered during the response.
"I think they're all going to have vote their conscience and look at what happened," Christie, a Republican, said Sunday on ABC's This Week, for which he is a regular contributor.
"What we had was an incitement to riot at the United States Capitol, we had people killed and to me, and to me there's not a whole lot of question here," Christie continued.
The former governor blamed Trump for the violence as it was still unfolding and asked him to end it.
"The president caused this protest to occur; he's the only one who can make it stop," Christie previously said on ABC News. "The president has to come out and tell his supporters to leave the capitol grounds and leave Congress to do their job.”
“If inciting to insurrection isn’t, then I don’t really know what is,” Christie said, when pressed by ABC host George Stephanopoulos to clarify whether he thought the president's actions on Wednesday were an impeachable offense.
All U.S. and New Jersey flags will be flown at half-staff, in honor of U.S. Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick of South River, Gov. Phil Murphy announced on Saturday.
At the White House, flags were lowered to half-staff on Sunday afternoon, according to CBS News. A procession was held in Washington D.C. also on Sunday, as Sicknick's law enforcement peers lined the streets as a hearse bearing his casket drove by.
Sicknick was a veteran who served in the New Jersey Air National Guard, before joining the U.S Capitol Police in 2008.
A GoFundMe campaign setup to benefit Sicknick's family had collected roughly $440,000 in donations as of Sunday afternoon.
All ten of New Jersey's congressional Democrats have vocally supported the removal of Trump from office following the chaos on Wednesday.
Both of the state's Republican Representatives have condemned the violence that erupted during Wednesday's riot, while not commenting on the expected introduction of articles of impeachment, as soon as this week.
U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., has said that Vice President Mike Pence and the presidential Cabinet should invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office, and if that fails to happen that Congress should be prepared to impeach.
While U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., has not explicitly gone on record since mid-week about potential repercussions for Trump, he did slam the president's actions.
"For months, President Trump has fed Americans a steady diet of lies and disinformation in an effort to overthrow the November 2020 election and cling on to power," Menendez said in a written statement late Wednesday, continuing “the President poured fuel on that fire by inciting a lawless and violent takeover of the United States Capitol."
Republican U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, who supports invoking the 25th Amendment to remove Trump, appeared on the same ABC News show on Sunday, and said he doesn’t think impeachment is the “smart move because it victimizes Donald Trump again.”
Kinzinger said if the president had more than a handful of days left in office, then impeachment “would be the right move."
So far, no U.S. president has ever been impeached twice. Three presidents have been impeached —Andrew Johnson in 1868, Bill Clinton in 1998 and Donald Trump in 2019. None were convicted at their Senate trials.