Biden news live: Updates as president calls for gun law reforms
Biden news live: Updates as president calls for gun law reforms
Related video: Trump attorney in post-impeachment interview meltdown
“This administration will not wait for the next mass shooting to heed that call,” Mr Biden said in a statement. “We owe it to all those we’ve lost and to all those left behind to grieve to make a change. The time to act is now.”
Democrats have meanwhile been ruing Donald Trump’s acquittal in the Senate on Saturday after he was impeached by the House of Representatives for inciting the Capitol riot, with House impeachment manager Stacey Plaskett reflecting: “We didn’t need more witnesses, we needed more senators with spines.”
So can Donald Trump run again in 2024?
Here’s Graeme Massie to ponder the question of the day.
The ex-president will be 78 by then and have spent his time on the sidelines basking in the Florida sunshine with no social media presence and may prefer to play kingmaker (or just heinous amounts of golf).
Alternatively, the ideal reality TV storyline of his “Great American Comeback” might prove too irresistable a siren song for the orange one to ignore.
Joe Sommerlad15 February 2021 11:15
Lara Trump could take Republican’s Senate seat after he voted to impeach Trump, says Graham
In the same interview, the senator suggested Trump’s daughter-in-law could win the GOP nomination for Richard Burr’s seat in North Carolina when the senator retires in 2022 after he joined six other Republicans to convict the former president.
“My friend Richard Burr just made Lara Trump almost the certain nominee for the senate seat in North Carolina to replace him if she runs,” Senator Graham said, insisting “the Trump movement is alive and well.”
There are a few outstanding issues he neglects to address here, however.
Although a popular MAGA cheerleader, the wife of Eric Trump has never held elected office, does not live in the state in question and has been named in a major campaign finance complaint, which could prove very inconvenient further down the road should she seek to revvie her in-law’s “drain the swamp” mantra.
Joe Sommerlad15 February 2021 10:55
Lindsey Graham threatens to impeach Kamala Harris
On the doggedly pro-Trump side of the aisle, the South Carolina senator told Fox News Sunday that Republicans will seek to impeach US vice president Kamala Harris if the GOP takes control of the House of Representatives in 2022, falsely claiming that she had paid bail for Black Lives Matter protesters who later “broke somebody’s head open”.
Graham called Trump’s impeachment trial “an affront to rule of law” that had “opened Pandora’s Box to future presidents”.
He added: “And if you use this model, I don’t know how Kamala Harris doesn’t get impeached if the Republicans take over the House.”
Joe Sommerlad15 February 2021 10:35
Legislators call for 9/11-style commission to investigate Capitol riot
Coons also used his interview with ABC to call for a inquiry like that established in the aftermath of al-Qaeda’s attack on the Twin Towers in 2001 to investigate the Capitol riot.
The Delaware senator and close Biden ally said the country must “make sure we secure the Capitol going forward and that we lay bare the record of just how responsible and how abjectly violating of his Constitutional oath Trump really was”.
“There’s still more evidence that the American people need and deserve to hear,” he added.
Here’s Alex Woodward again.
Joe Sommerlad15 February 2021 10:15
Democrats rue Trump aquittal
Biden’s fellow Democrats have also been ruing Trump’s acquittal, with House impeachment manager Stacey Plaskett telling Jake Tapper on CNN’s State of the Union: “We didn’t need more witnesses, we needed more senators with spines.”
Her colleague Chris Coons agreed on ABC’s This Week, saying a lack of “Republican courage” was the reason for the trial’s failure to secure a conviction after even the ex-president’s own lawyer, Bruce Castor, admitted the case for the prosecution had been impressive.
Explaining the decision not to call witnesses, lead impeachment manager Jamie Raskin told NBC’s Meet the Press: “We could have had a thousand witnesses but that could not have overcome the kinds of silly arguments that people like McConnell and [Fox pundit Neil] Caputo were hanging their hats on.”
Here’s Alex Woodward on the backlash Senator McConnell and the handful of GOP rebels who moved against Trump can expect from the party’s right-wing fringe, still ultra-loyal to a president who won 74m votes in November despite losing.
Joe Sommerlad15 February 2021 09:55
Biden says ‘democracy must always be defended’ after Trump’s acquittal
The president also issued a statement on his predecessor, Donald Trump, being acquitted in the US Senate on Saturday after being impeached by the House of Representatives for inciting the riot at the US Capitol Building on 6 January that left five people dead.
The 45th president survived being barred from running for elected office again when a vote passed 57-43 in favour of conviction – not enough to secure the 67 or two-thirds supermajority needed in the chamber after only seven Republicans joined Democrats in condemning his actions.
“This sad chapter in our history has reminded us that democracy is fragile. That it must always be defended. That we must be ever vigilant. That violence and extremism has no place in America,” Biden said.
Importantly, the president insisted that “the substance of the charge is not in dispute.”
“Even those opposed to the conviction, like Senate Minority Leader McConnell, believe Donald Trump was guilty of a ‘disgraceful dereliction of duty’ and ‘practically and morally responsible for provoking’ the violence unleashed on the Capitol,” he added.
Joe Sommerlad15 February 2021 09:35
President calls for gun reform on Parkland anniversary
US president Joe Biden called for “common sense gun law reforms” on the third anniversary of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, which saw 17 people shot dead and 17 more injured, giving rise to the March for our Lives movement.
“In seconds, the lives of dozens of families, and the life of an American community, were changed forever,” Mr Biden reflected in a statement.
“This administration will not wait for the next mass shooting to heed that call. We owe it to all those we’ve lost and to all those left behind to grieve to make a change. The time to act is now.”
Florida’s Republican governor Ron DeSantis ordered flags be lowered to half staff from sunrise to sunset across the state on Sunday to honour those who perished when a former student opened fire on campus with an AR-15 rifle on Valentine’s Day 2018.
Joe Sommerlad15 February 2021 09:15
Good morning and welcome to The Independent’s rolling coverage of the Joe Biden administration.
Joe Sommerlad15 February 2021 09:05