Trump acquitted in second impeachment trial

DONALD Trump, former United States president, has been acquitted of inciting Capitol Hill insurrection on January 6.  

Trump was freed by the Senate after a charge bordering on incitement of insurrection was brought against him by the House of Representatives.

This is the second time in 14 months the former US president would be acquitted by the Senate.

Trump was acquitted after 43 Republican Senators voted against 57 members on Saturday to free him of any wrongdoing.

That fell short of the two-thirds Democrats needed to convict Trump, who is the only US president to be impeached twice while in office.

Notably, however, seven Republican Senators voted to convict the former president, the largest number of conviction votes from Senators in president’s own party in US history.

This was Trump’s second impeachment trial.  His first impeachment trial, which took place in December 2019, was based on his pressuring Ukraine to investigate now President Joe Biden. While he was impeached by the House of Representatives, he was acquitted by the then Republican-dominated Senate. The same drama has also played out in the second impeachment, where the Senate refused to validate the House of Representatives’ impeachment.

The second trial’s outcome was not a surprise as the bar to convict Trump would have required a significant bipartisan vote at a time when the US is extremely partisan – more deeply polarised politically than it has been in decades.

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“This trial wasn’t about choosing country over party, even not that this was about choosing country over Donald Trump and 43 Republican members chose Trump. They chose Trump,” Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer said following the vote.






     

     

    Trump, for his part, released a statement calling the trial “yet another phase of the greatest witch hunt in the history of our country.”

    “No president has ever gone through anything like it,” Trump added.

    Democrats had hoped that Republicans, who experienced the riot first-hand and were deliberating at the scene of the crime, would put politics aside and vote for conviction.

    While the vote reflects the deep divisions between Republicans and Democrats, it also magnifies the deep divisions within the GOP–between pro-Trump lawmakers and those that feel he should be held accountable.

    You can reach out to me on Twitter via: vincent_ufuoma

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