Republicans vote to convict Trump in impeachment trial

Cornelia Mascio
Febbraio 14, 2021

But by voting for acquittal, McConnell and his fellow Republicans left the party locked in its struggle to define itself after Trump's defeat in November.

"The failure to convict Donald Trump will live as a vote of infamy in the history of the United States Senate", Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said soon after 43 of the Republican Senators voted to acquit Trump.

Florida's Rick Scott and Marco Rubio were among 43 Republicans in the U.S. Senate whose votes Saturday enabled former President Donald Trump to escape conviction in an impeachment trial for a second time. That we must be ever vigilant. But his statement ignored the fact that the vote against him was bipartisan, with 10 Republicans joining Democrats in the House to impeach and seven Republicans joining with Democrats in the Senate.

The Senate's failure to convict former President Trump for inciting a deadly insurrection is a miscarriage of justice.

Mr Trump welcomed the outcome and said: "Our historic, patriotic and lovely movement to Make America Great Again has only just begun".

McConnell's decision to acquit Trump left the party locked in its struggle to define itself in the post-Trump presidency.

Trump was castigated shortly after the vote by top Republican McConnell, who voted for acquittal on procedural grounds but warned the former USA president could yet be investigated by the authorities.

"Even those opposed to the conviction, like Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, believe Donald Trump was guilty of a "disgraceful dereliction of duty" and "practically and morally responsible for provoking' the violence unleashed on the Capitol".

Democrats argued that Trump's behavior was an "open and shut" case of impeachable conduct, retracing how he spent two months repeating the falsehood that the election was stolen, before inciting his supporters to attack Congress and stop the certification of Joe Biden's victory.

Another who didn't vote with his party was Mitt Romney, who has been a vocal critic of Trump and was the only Republican senator to vote for conviction during the former president's first impeachment trial previous year.

He expanded on his rationale on the Senate floor after Saturday's roll call, making clear his enmity toward Trump's actions.

"It's nearly like he has no choice but to continue to try to be in politics", she said. Battered at times by vindictive presidential tweets, McConnell made a habit of saying nothing about many of Trump's outrageous comments.

Toomey, a traditional conservative, decried Trump's efforts to overturn election results - Trump's targets include Toomey's Pennsylvania - and to encourage his supporters' march on the Capitol.

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