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impeachment article will be sent ‘soon’

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Biden changes decor in Oval Office to include busts of César Chávez and Eleanor Roosevelt plus portraits of Franklin Roosevelt and Benjamin Franklin.

USA TODAY

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi refused again Thursday to say when she would send the article of impeachment charging former President Donald Trump with inciting an insurrection to the Senate, which would set the stage for a trial.

“I’m not going to be telling you when it is going,” Pelosi said. “The other questions are about how a trial would proceed. We are ready.”

A source familiar with the plan, but not authorized to speak on the record, said the article could be sent Friday, setting the stage for a trial Monday. The plan may be subject to change, the source said.

Pelosi declined a chance to “put a finer point” on timing for the trial. She said she will meet with House members who will serve as prosecutors, called managers.

“It’ll be soon,” she said.

The timing of the trial has been uncertain because the Senate trial may distract the chamber from confirming President Joe Biden’s nominees and debating his legislative agenda. But Democrats are also eager to put the trial behind them.

Trump is charged with encouraging rioters who laid siege to the Capitol on Jan. 6 and then stormed through the halls, smashing doors, windows and antiques along the way.

Trump has said his speech that morning encouraged peaceful protest as Congress counted the Electoral College votes confirming Biden’s victory. But lawmakers experienced the result firsthand, evacuating their chambers and then picked through the wreckage afterward.

Once the article arrives, the trial becomes the Senate’s first order of business.

– Nicholas Wu and Bart Jansen

With help from Fauci, Biden focusing on pandemic on first full day

President Joe Biden kicks off his first full day in office with a virtual prayer service at the Washington National Cathedral, a final inauguration tradition before turning to his top priority: combatting the COVID-19 pandemic.

Biden will make remarks later Thursday on the new steps he’s taking to tackle the virus through more executive orders and Dr. Anthony Fauci will make his debut as Biden’s top medical adviser.

Fauci will appear at the afternoon’s White House briefing, in the press room where he had to step carefully around former President Donald Trump.

Biden emphasized during the campaign he would be following the lead of scientists. That includes putting them out front on public communication, according to White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki.

 “We’re having public health experts, medical experts, really leading our communication about the process that is underway to get the pandemic under control,” Psaki said on MSNBC Thursday.

Before she spoke, Fauci had already addressed remotely the World Health Organization, from which Trump had cut ties.

“Given that a considerable amount of effort will be required by all of us moving forward, the United States stands ready to work in partnership and solidarity to support the international COVID-19 response, mitigate its impact on the world, strengthen our institutions, advance epidemic preparedness for the future, and improve the health and wellbeing of all people throughout the world,” Fauci said.

Biden will build on the executive orders he signed Wednesday with three more health-related actions. He wants to beef up protective equipment and medical supplies through the Defense Production Act. He wants to bolster testing and ensure equitable access to treatment. And he’s expected to order masks be worn on planes and trains and to require international travelers to have tested negative for the coronavirus before entering the United States.

New mask mandate: Will it reduce number of in-flight scofflaws?

Vaccine distribution: Amazon offers to help Biden administration with COVID vaccine

Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2021/01/21/live-politics-updates-biden-address-covid-response-fauci-debut/4243605001/





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