The U.S. Senate voted 57-43, thus acquitting former President Donald Trump in his second impeachment trial. Trump was charged by the House of Representatives with incitement of insurrection in connection with the January 6 Capitol building riot.
Two-thirds of the Senate, or 67 votes, were required to convict Trump. All Democrats voted in favor of conviction, in addition to these seven Republican Senators: Richard Burr of North Carolina; Bill Cassidy of Louisiana; Susan Collins of Maine; Lisa Murkowski of Alaska; Ben Sasse of Nebraska; Mitt Romney of Utah; and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.
Cassidy has since been censured by the Louisiana Republican Party’s executive committee for his “guilty” vote, and the chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party released a statement calling Burr’s “guilty” vote “disappointing.”
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who voted to acquit Trump along with 42 other Republican senators, argued after the trial concluded that Trump was still “practically and morally responsible” for the events of January 6. But also believed that the impeachment process was a specific remedy that did not apply to presidents who had already left office.
“If president Trump were still in office, I would have carefully considered whether the House managers proved their specific charge,” said McConnell.
“We have no power to convict and disqualify a former office holder who is now a private citizen,” added McConnell.