WASHINGTON (WOWO): In a culmination of an effort by U.S. House Democrats that began in late 2019 – with some saying it began in the day after Election Day in November 2016 – Senate Republicans voted to acquit President Donald Trump of charges of obstruction of Congress and abuse of power today in a predominantly party-line vote.
The vote on abuse of power was 52 Not Guilty, 48 Guilty. All but one Republican voted Not Guilty, and every Democrat and both Independents voted Guilty.
The vote on obstruction of Congress was 53 Not Guilty, 47 Guilty. All Republicans voted Not Guilty, and every Democrat and both Independents voted Guilty.
67 votes were required to convict on either charge.
Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California led Trump’s impeachment in the House of Representatives, declaring at the time the inquiry launched in September — spurred on by a whistleblower complaint that Trump withheld foreign aid to Ukraine in the hopes the country would announce an investigation into political rival Joe Biden’s son Hunter — that the request was a “betrayal of our national security.”
House impeachment managers chosen to prosecute the case included House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, (D-California) who led much of the impeachment inquiry, and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, (D-New York), whose panel drafted the articles of impeachment.
Both of Indiana’s U.S. Senators, Republicans Todd Young and Mike Braun, voted for acquittal on both charges.
The lone dissenter from Republican ranks was Utah Senator and former Presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who told Fox News his religious beliefs mandated that he vote to convict Trump on the abuse of power charge:
Trump has constantly referred to the situation as a “hoax” and a “witch hunt,” doing so again yesterday, a day before the vote:
My Approval Rating in the Republican Party = 95%, a record! Big Iowa win. Approval Rating overall = 53%, a new high. With our great Economy and other major successes, would be 20 points higher without the phony Witch Hunts and Hoaxes???
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 4, 2020
Trump is just the third U.S. President to be impeached, following Bill Clinton and Andrew Johnson. They, also, were both acquitted.