Senate Votes to Acquit Donald Trump in Second Impeachment Trial


Former President Donald Trump’s second impeachment trial came to a close on Saturday, February 13, with the Senate voting 57-43 to acquit him.

CNN reports that Democrats needed 17 Republicans to vote with them to convict Trump, but only seven Republican Senators voted for a conviction: Richard Burr, Bill Cassidy, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Mitt Romney, Ben Sasse, and Pat Toomey. Had he been convicted, lawmakers would have been able to issue a vote to bar Trump from holding future office.

Trump was officially impeached (for the second time) on January 13 by the House of Representatives, following the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. The decision was made in a 232-197 vote, with House Democrats and some Republicans agreeing to impeach the former president for “incitement of an insurrection.”

In the initial article of impeachment, which was filed on January 11, House Democrats argued that Trump “repeatedly issued false statements asserting that the Presidential election results were the product of widespread fraud and should not be accepted by the American people,” specifically noting Trump’s involvement at the “Save America” rally on January 6, just before the insurrection took place.

Trump’s Senate trial began on February 9, and included evidence of what took place during the January 6 attack on the Capitol, along with previously unreleased video footage from inside the building. Throughout the week, House managers argued that Trump should be convicted and barred from holding office in the future, while Trump’s defense team attempted to refute claims that the former president incited the violence that occurred last January.

On Saturday, House impeachment managers had requested to call witnesses; later, Senators agreed on admitting a witness statement instead of calling actual witnesses, thus moving along the closing statements and final vote.

This is Trump’s second time being impeached and acquitted by the Senate. He is the only president in U.S. history to ever be impeached twice.

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