U.S. Rep. Bill Foster is backing an effort to impeach President Donald Trump for inciting the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol last week.
The House of Representatives is expected to vote on one article of impeachment Wednesday if Vice President Mike Pence does not invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from power.
Foster, D-Naperville, said the most urgent task for Congress is to ensure Trump be removed from office.
“The focus is and should be getting him out of office as quickly as possible,” Foster said in an interview. “Every moment he has the nuclear codes is a danger to the United States.”
Foster added the president has been displaying “increasingly erratic behavior” since he lost the election.
The congressman acknowledged it’s very unlikely Trump will be removed before his term ends on Jan. 20 if Pence doesn’t act. Still, Foster argued an unprecedented second impeachment would “make clear to history and to future presidents that his conduct was unacceptable.”
Foster added he has “many questions” about the security failures which led to rioters making their way into the Capitol building. He said Congress is demanding “a very detailed timeline” of what decisions were made in the lead up and response to the riot.
He said he was also “distressed” to learn about at least three members of Congress, including Rep. Brad Schneider of Illinois, who tested positive for the novel coronavirus after being taken to a secure area during the attack with some members who refused to wear face masks.
Foster said he was struck by images of officers guarding the entrance of the House floor with guns drawn. He said it’s a door he’s passed many times as he’s gone to vote.
“It was unsettling,” he said of seeing those images.
Other local members of Congress including Reps. Marie Newman, D-La Grange, and Lauren Underwood, D-Naperville, have said they will vote to impeach the president if Pence doesn’t act. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Channahon, has called for Trump’s removal from office via the 25th Amendment.