WASHINGTON (WCSC/AP/CNN) — U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham said Friday if House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pushes impeaching President Donald Trump, it would “do more harm than good,” saying he is hopeful President-elect Joe Biden “sees the damage that would be done from such action.”
“Any attempt to impeach President Trump would not only be unsuccessful in the Senate but would be a dangerous precedent for the future of the presidency,” Graham said in a Twitter post. “It will take both parties to heal the nation.”
Graham also said impeachment would “further divide the country and erode the institution of the presidency itself.”
During a news conference on Thursday, Graham said Trump did tremendous things for the country.
“It breaks my heart that a president of a consequence would allow yesterday to happen, and it will be a major part of his presidency,” Graham said Thursday. “It was a self inflicted wound. It was going too far.”
Graham said the next two weeks can begin “to right the ship” depending on how Trump behaves.
Democrats in Congress are swiftly laying plans to impeach Trump, saying they hope to send a message to the nation, and the world, that mob violence inspired by a White House will not stand.
Some Republicans are joining, saying Trump must go.
Five people have died as a result of Wednesday’s riot, which some say Trump incited earlier that day when he spoke to supporters at a rally before Congress was set to convene and affirm the Electoral College vote for Biden.
Impeachment proceedings could begin in a matter of days, according to private talks on Friday.
Pelosi says she also has spoken to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff about preventing Trump from ordering a nuclear strike in his final days.
“This is urgent. This is emergency of the highest magnitude,” she said.
Earlier on Friday, Biden did not embrace the idea of impeaching Trump.
“I’m focused on the virus, the vaccine and economic growth,” Biden said. “What the congress decides to do is for them to decide.”
Biden, meanwhile, did call for a full investigation into the riot, saying it was carried out by “thugs and domestic terrorists.”
“The damage done to our reputation around the world by a president of the United States encouraging a mob -- a mob -- this reminded me more of states I visited over the 100 countries I’ve gone to in third tinhorn dictatorships,” he said. “It just cannot be sustained. It has to be immediately, immediately investigated in depth and people have to be held accountable.”
Trump said he would not be attending Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20.
Trump posted to his Twitter account that he would not attend the inauguration, and that tweet was one of two he posted on his @realDonaldTrump account that Twitter said led them to permanently suspend him from the platform.
CNN reported the president and first lady are scheduled to leave Washington for Mar-A-Lago the day before Biden is sworn in.