As momentum built Friday for the impeachment of President Trump for inciting Wednesday’s mob attack on the U.S. Capitol, three of Maine’s four Congressional representatives are not saying if they support the last-minute effort to remove him from office.

A spokeswoman for Sen. Susan Collins, the sole Republican in Maine’s delegation, said her office will not be commenting on impeachment “because of the Senate’s constitutional role in those proceedings, which includes sitting as a jury.”

Annie Clark, said via email that Collins had talked to many of her colleagues and all, including her, were “outraged about the violence at the Capitol and the president’s role.” Collins has not said if the president should be removed from office, as her Republican colleague Lisa Murkowski of Alaska did earlier in Friday.

Sen. Angus King, an independent who caucuses with the Democrats, was unavailable for comment on impeachment Friday, his staff said. On Thursday, King said in a written statement that he thought Vice President Mike Pence and Trump’s Cabinet should consider invoking the 25th Amendment to remove the president from office. King did not address impeachment.

Pence is apparently not supporting invocation of the amendment, according to media reports citing unnamed members of the vice president’s staff, and on Friday had not returned calls from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and incoming Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York, seeking clarity on the matter.

As it appeared less likely Trump’s Cabinet would remove him from office, momentum built Friday among House Democrats to begin impeachment proceedings against the president, who they fear could do further damage to the country between now and President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20.


Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-1st District, participated in a noon caucus call convened by Pelosi that lasted three hours and ended with the second impeachment of the president looking likely to take place early next week.

Pingree, the only member of the Maine delegation to have taken a clear stand in support of impeachment, said there was broad support among House Democrats, who constitute a thin majority in the chamber.

“There was extremely broad agreement in our caucus that we would move ahead on this,” Pingree said via telephone Friday night. “People are just so angry at the actions of the president and even though there is just this short period of time available to us, we can’t just let this go. We have to make clear that the president stepped over the line.”

Pingree said her colleagues expressed far fewer concerns on the call than they had prior to the previous impeachment of the president late last year for abuse of power and obstruction of the probe of his attempt to pressure Ukraine’s president to reopen an investigation of Biden’s son.

“At this point there is deep concern about the damage he could continue to do to the country,” she said. “You could look at this and say, ‘It’s just a few days until the end of his term, maybe he’ll just go golfing in Florida.’ But he’s not doing this. There are already rumors that he’s trying to call for another march on Washington and to wind things up again or that he might pardon people who could have been involved in criminal activity in the Capitol.”

Rep. Jared Golden, D-2nd District, was not available to speak to a reporter Friday, but a spokesman said his position remained unchanged after the caucus call.

In a statement Thursday, Golden said that the president was responsible for Wednesday’s “violence and lawlessness, and he should be held accountable,” but did not commit to a position on what form that accountability should take.

“There are many different forms of accountability, and Congress must engage in a discussion about what is on the table, and how best to work towards action that can be taken with majority support, if not more,” Golden said, adding that he had begun conversations with colleagues in both parties “to try to build consensus on how we can bring about accountability.”

If the House votes to impeach the president, the Senate will be required to promptly convene a trial to consider whether to remove him from office, but it is not clear that the trial would be concluded before Jan. 20.

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