Trump Acquitted in Second Impeachment Trial Despite 7 Republicans Voting To Convict
Former President Donald Trump was acquitted by the Senate on Saturday as his second impeachment trial came to a conclusion.
Seven Republicans joined all 50 Democrats in voting to convict Trump, who was charged with having incited an insurrection by encouraging rioters to mob the U.S. Capitol on January 6. Despite the Republican defections, the final vote of 57-43 was insufficient to meet the two-thirds majority required to convict Trump and bar him from holding federal office in the future.
Still, the number of Republicans who broke ranks is significant—when the Senate voted on Trump’s first impeachment in January 2020, Sen. Mitt Romney (R–Utah) was the lone Republican to vote for conviction. This time, Romney was joined by Sens. Richard Burr (R–N.C.), Bill Cassidy (R–La.), Susan Collins (R–Maine), Lisa Murkowski (R–Alaska), Ben Sasse (R–Neb.), and Pat Toomey (R–Pa.)
Those senators, and the 10 Republican members of the House of Representatives who voted to impeach Trump last month, clearly demonstrate the stark divide facing the party as it seeks a post-Trump identity.
The outcome of Trump’s trial was never in much serious doubt, but Saturday did provide some late drama when five Republicans unexpectedly sided with Democrats in voting to allow witnesses to testify at the trial. The vote temporarily opened the door to a much longer impeachment trial—one that likely would have included even more damning evidence of Trump’s role in fomenting the January 6th chaos. But shortly after the vote, Senate De
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