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Trump impeachment news – live: White House staffer heard saying 'Merry Impeachmas', as president faces mounting backlash for suggesting dead congressman in hell

As Donald Trump reels from Wednesday’s House vote making him only the third American president to be impeached, a Washington Post reporter has claimed he overheard a White House staffer wishing colleagues a “Merry Impeachmas”, suggesting the president’s inner circle is not as united as he likes to insist.

Mr Trump has meanwhile been attracting criticism from his fellow Republicans after attacking Democratic congresswoman Debbie Dingell and suggesting her late husband is in hell during his rally in Battle Creek, Michigan, this week, with Oklahoma’s Tom Cole branding his remarks “extraordinarily inappropriate”.

The president has also lost the support of influential religious periodical Christianity Today, founded by legendary evangelist Billy Graham, which has called for his ousting as the Democratic 2020 contenders took to the stage in Los Angeles for their latest debate last night.

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Influential Christian magazine turns on president over 'profoundly immoral' conduct

The president has also lost the support of influential religious periodical Christianity Today, founded by legendary evangelist Billy Graham, which has called for his ousting over his "profoundly immoral".

In an editorial published a day after the House of Representatives impeached Trump on charges of abusing his office and obstructing Congress, the periodical said the president needed to go, throwing down a gauntlet to those Republicans in the Senate who have indicated they will vote against the measures, enabling him to stay in office.

“The typical CT approach is to stay above the fray and allow Christians with different political convictions to make their arguments in the public square, to encourage all to pursue justice according to their convictions and treat their political opposition as charitably as possible,” the magazine’s team said.

“We want CT to be a place that welcomes Christians from across the political spectrum, and reminds everyone that politics is not the end and purpose of our being.”

Here's Andrew Buncombe's has more.

Republicans turn on Trump over vicious rally attack on congresswoman's late husband

The president has meanwhile been attracting criticism from his fellow Republicans after attacking Democratic congresswoman Debbie Dingell and suggesting her late husband John is in hell during his rally in Battle Creek, Michigan, this week, with Oklahoma’s Tom Cole branding his remarks “extraordinarily inappropriate”.

“Anyone who served with John Dingell respected him, knew he was a very serious legislator and that he represented the House of Representatives with the highest personal and professional integrity,” Cole told The Hill.  

During the Michigan rally on Wednesday night, Trump lashed out at the family following Debbie Dingell casting two votes in favour of the two articles of impeachment against him, suggesting the former dean of the House was “looking up” from hell after noting he [Trump] had lowered flags to half-mast in the capital in the wake of his death. 


“She calls me up. 'It's the nicest thing that's ever happened. Thank you so much. John should be so thrilled. He's looking down. He'd be so thrilled,” Trump told his supporters. “'Thank you so much, sir.' I said, 'That's OK, don't worry about it.' Maybe he's looking up. I don't know.”

Michigan Republican congressmen Fred Upton and Paul Mitchell joined Cole in condemning the attack, the former tweeting:

Washington Republican Jamie Herrera Beutler commented: “I think it's really sad. It's a really, really terrible thing to say. It's Christmas, to make jokes about where people are spending eternity - you must be really sure about where you're spending your eternity, right? It's terrible.


“Debbie and I don't agree on everything, but she's an awesome lady and she doesn't deserve to have her husband's legacy turned into a political talking point, a political joke. It's terrible.”

New York's Tom Reed, Susan Brooks of Indiana and Georiga's Barry Loudermilk and Rob Woodall also talked to The Hill to express their disapproval, along with plenty of others on the opposite side of the aisle.

On MSNBC, The Bulwark's editor-at-large Charlie Sykes said: "Even people in that rally audience were taken aback but I am mystified that anyone is mystified that the president would go this way. You know, this is the Donald Trump we have seen over the last four or five years so anybody that is professing 'well this is a bad moment, I have no idea why Donald Trump would do this' - this is what he does when he's under pressure, when he's feeling victimised and again this is the Donald Trump we're going to be seeing now, lashing out after impeachment."

Jonathan Lemire of the AP added that the crowd in the arena was not with him in the attack and that it was unwise of the president to risk alienating an important swing state by attacking a "favourite son" like John Dingell - or any of the other deceased public figures he's gone after like late soldiers Humayun Khan and La David Johnson or Arizona senator John McCain.

Here's Matt Drake on that shocking moment from Trump's Wednesday address to his MAGA base.

White House staffer heard wishing colleagues 'Merry Impeachmas'

As Donald Trump reels from Wednesday’s House vote making him only the third American president to be impeached, Washington Post reporter Dan Zak has claimed he overheard a White House staffer wishing colleagues a “Merry Impeachmas”, suggesting the president’s inner circle is not as united as he likes to insist.

The revelation appeared on Twitter after the president's eldest son, Don Jr, reacted angrily to a tweet by Zak's fellow journalist Rachael Bade depicting Post staff gathering to toast the impeachment vote in a Washington bar.

She has since deleted the tweet in response to a backlash inspired by Trump Jr, saying her holiday greeting has been "misinterpreted".

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