Donald Trump became the first US president in history to be impeached for a second time as the House of Representatives charged him with “incitement to insurrection” for his role in last week’s mob attack on the Capitol.
The House voted 232 to 197 on Wednesday in favour of impeaching the president, with 10 Republicans breaking ranks to join the Democrats in voting to charge Mr Trump.
The vote in the House will be followed by a trial in the Senate. However, the Senate is not due to reconvene until Tuesday, a day before the inauguration of Joe Biden. Mitch McConnell, the Republican Senate majority leader, has signalled he will not reconvene the upper chamber early, setting the stage for an impeachment trial in the early days of the new Biden administration.
Democrats, who will assume control of the Senate on January 20, need a significant number of Republican senators to abandon the president in the trial to reach the two-thirds majority required to convict Mr Trump.
Mr McConnell, who has privately clashed with Mr Trump in private over the past four years but rarely rebuked him in public, held open the possibility that he would vote to convict the president in an impeachment trial.
Meanwhile, concerns of extremist attacks at Mr Biden’s inauguration led to dramatic tightening of security in Washington DC. Airbnb said on Wednesday it was cancelling all bookings in the Washington area next week to prevent members of hate groups from using its platform.
In a video to his supporters, Mr Trump called for calm. “Violence and vandalism have absolutely no place in our country, and no place in our movement,” Mr Trump said in the recorded message, which did not mention the House impeachment vote.
Members of the US National Guard have been drafted in to secure the Capitol building around the clock, using it as a barracks for the first time since the civil war. (FT, NYT)
Exclusive: Alibaba, Tencent, Baidu spared from US investor blacklist The US Treasury has blocked an attempt by the Pentagon and state department to put some of China’s largest tech companies on a blacklist that would have banned US investors from holding their stock. (FT)
New York City is latest to cut ties with Trump businesses New York City will cut business ties with the Trump Organization, becoming the latest in a series of partners to dump the president and his family empire following last week’s violent attack on Capitol Hill. (FT)
Intel replaces chief after series of setbacks Intel is replacing its chief executive Bob Swan after a series of manufacturing setbacks and competitive blunders at the veteran Silicon Valley company. Pat Gelsinger, a former chief technology officer at Intel who went on to work for software company VMware, will take over. These are the challenges he faces. (FT)
Affirm shares double on IPO debut The consumer lender led by PayPal co-founder Max Levchin almost doubled in value after its public debut on Wednesday, in a sign of the continued exuberance for new US listings. (FT)
Hasenstab suffers largest outflow among bond managers in 2020 Michael Hasenstab, the manager who runs the Templeton Global Bond fund, suffered the largest outflow among US fixed-income funds in 2020 as he lost money in a disastrous bet that bond prices would fall. (FT)
Barnier warns post-Brexit border friction ‘the new normal’ The EU’s Brexit negotiator has warned that many of the frictions hampering cross-Channel trade will be impossible to smooth over as part of the inevitable consequences of Brexit. (FT)
Murdoch’s India drive James Murdoch is embarking on a new media venture in India after reuniting with Uday Shankar, the executive who helped build his family’s Star television empire. The project aims to build a “large-scale” business spanning digital media, education and healthcare delivery, developed in part through acquisitions. (FT)
Fund manager bets old river dams as new source of renewable energy Dams built long ago to control floods or ease river transport are gaining attention as a potential zero carbon electricity source in the US, as environmentalists and the hydropower industry drop their longstanding antagonism in the face of climate change. (FT)
Earnings Delta Air Lines and BlackRock, the asset manager, both report earnings today.
Economic data US initial jobs data are out today; the number for jobless claims fell for the third consecutive time last week but remains near 800,000. (FT)
Samsung Galaxy unpacked Closely following this week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is Unpacked 2021, where Samsung will reveal the Galaxy S21 series. (FT)
Uganda election The country goes to the polls in presidential elections. Bobi Wine, a popular singer, will challenge Yoweri Museveni, who has been in power since 1986. (FT)
America’s crisis runs deeper than ideology America — and the world — is still reeling in horror at the political chasm exposed by the violence in the US Capitol, writes Gillian Tett. But it has become clear it is not just an ideological fight; it is a battle around thought that has been escalating since Donald Trump hit the presidential campaign trail.
Turkish intrigue in the Balkans Extractions of Turkish citizens across the Balkans and other nations beholden to Ankara have raised alarm over President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s assertive foreign policy. Several officials told the Financial Times that they had faced “constant” pressure to comply with the crackdown on alleged coup plotters or risk consequences. (FT)
This is the third part of a series exploring Turkey’s geopolitical ambitions.
The Arab uprising: what happened next When Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year reign finally ended in 2011, it was easy to believe the Arab world had changed. But a crackdown that first targeted the Islamist movement has evolved into an assault against critical debate. Here are the voices of activists as they reflect on their struggles for reforms. (FT)
French left eyes a narrow path to power In the past two decades France’s once-powerful Socialists have suffered the kind of crushing electoral defeats that can remove a party permanently from political power. But now, with the help of Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo, the party’s leaders sense a glimmer of light on the horizon. (FT)
The future of business travel The sector directly and indirectly supports one in seven jobs worldwide, according to the Global Business Travel Association. It also subsidises mass tourism and had annual revenues of $1.4tn in 2019. But in the pandemic, it has lost an estimated $710bn of revenue. Will hotels and airlines ever claw that back? (FT)
Simple tech transforms lawyers’ work The ultimate prize for tech-savvy lawyers is coding after Covid-19 sparked an embrace of online document sharing, data analysis and e-signatures. Read the third part in our special report series on the legal sector’s response to digitalisation. (FT)
America’s political meltdown After the storming of the Capitol, can America recover its democratic values? Gideon Rachman discusses what the recent lawlessness means for the US and its place in the world with Anne-Marie Slaughter, head of New America, a think-tank. (FT)
Banx: More violence feared in aftermath of Capitol riots. (FT)