Opinionthis Trump Impeachment Defense Falls Apart As Soon As You Read The Constitution
Yet 45 Republican senators voted against taking up the impeachment trial Tuesday. Some want to spend as little time thinking and talking about Trump as possible, but many are still in thrall to his base. Twenty Republican-held Senate seats will be contested in two years, and the current occupants no doubt fear primary challengers from the MAGA right if they show any sign of breaking with Trump. What’s less clear is why, given their rhetoric and behavior over the last four years, they think the country would be any worse off with Trump sycophants in their seats.
Thanks to the impeachment process they’ve been gifted by the Democrats, Senate Republicans have one last chance to break with Trump and the conspiracist authoritarianism he represents. Their opening move Tuesday was a weak one, but they still have time for a course correction when the vote on conviction takes place next month. If they won’t do it for the country, they should at least do it to save their place in the party.
How Many Senators Will Vote To Convict Donald Trump
Now that Donald Trump has been impeached for an historic second time, attention turns to the Senate where, according to the Constitution, a trial will begin. The big question isunlike last year when only one Republican Senator voted to convict Trump on charges resulting from his phone call with the President of Ukrainewill there be 17 Republican senators willing to vote to convict Trump?
Lets start with what we know. Senator Ben Sasse is the only senator who has said clearly that he is open to convicting Trump. Senator Mitt Romney voted to convict last year when Trump was impeached over his phone call with the Ukrainian president. The charges in this impeachment are equally if not more serious, so it seems likely that he too may vote to convict. Senator Lisa Murkowski and Senator Patrick Toomey have also made statements signaling that theyve had enough of Trump. Murkowski just wants him out, saying He has caused enough damage, and Toomey thinks he committed impeachable offenses but is unsure whether impeachment makes sense this close to the end of the Trump presidency.
Will Not Support Trumps Re
Former President George W. Bush: Although he has not spoken about whom he will vote for in November, people familiar with Mr. Bushs thinking have said it wont be Mr. Trump. Mr. Bush did not endorse him in 2016.
Senator Mitt Romney of Utah: Mr. Romney has long been critical of Mr. Trump, and was the only Republican senator to vote to convict him during his impeachment trial. Mr. Romney is still mulling over whom he will vote for in November he opted for his wife, Ann, four years ago but he is said to be sure it wont be the president.
John Bolton, the former national security adviser: As he rolled out his recently published book, The Room Where It Happened, Mr. Bolton said in multiple interviews that he would not vote for Mr. Trump in November. He added that he would write in the name of a conservative Republican, but that he was not sure which one.
Gov. Phil Scott of Vermont: Mr. Scott has said multiple times this summer that he will not be voting for the president, a position that he also took in 2016. He says he has not yet decided whether or not he will vote for Mr. Biden.
William H. McRaven, a retired four-star Navy admiral: Several Republican admirals and generals have publicly announced they will not support the president. In an interview with The New York Times, Admiral McRaven, who directed the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, said, This fall, its time for new leadership in this country Republican, Democrat or independent.
Also Check: Republicans Are Stupid Donald Trump Quote
Drafted Articles Of Impeachment
Within hours of the Capitol attack, multiple members of Congress began to call for the impeachment of Donald Trump as president. Several representatives began the process of independently drafting various articles of impeachment. Of these attempts, the first to become public were those of Representative Ilhan Omar ” rel=”nofollow”>DMN-5) who drafted and introduced articles of impeachment against Trump.
Representative David Cicilline ” rel=”nofollow”>DRI-1) separately drafted an article of impeachment. The text was obtained by CNN on January 8. On Twitter, Cicilline acknowledged the coauthorship of Ted Lieu and Jamie Raskin, and said that “more than 110” members had signed on to this article. “Article I: Incitement of Insurrection” accuses Trump of having “willfully made statements that encouragedand foreseeably resulted inimminent lawless action at the Capitol”. As a result of incitement by Trump, “a mob unlawfully breached the Capitol” and “engaged in violent, deadly, destructive, and seditious acts”. On January 10, it was announced that the bill had gathered 210 cosponsors in the House.
So What Brings Down Approval Ratings
President Richard M. Nixon won a landslide reelection in 1972. His approval rating hit 67 percent at his second inauguration in January 1973; by October it had declined to just 27 percent, where it remained until his exit. Unlike Trumps, Nixons popularity gradually declined even among Republicans from almost 90 percent to about 50 percent over the same period. That may be why several Republicans voted to move forward with a Judiciary Committee recommendation to impeach Nixon and did not subsequently suffer at the polls.
Why such a difference between Nixons crimes and the allegations against Trump? One key reason is that partisanship is stronger today, with voters less likely to shift opinions about their party. Thats reinforced by partisan news feeds, with Republicans and Democrats consuming different sources of information. But theres another factor. In 1973-1974, the U.S. was in a recession. Nixons approval rating went down as worries about the economy went up. Republican voters might have continued to back Nixon had the economy been strong.
Would a recession hurt Trumps popularity among Republicans? Given todays partisanship, thats hard to say. But comparative evidence suggests that unless Trumps popularity among Republican voters drops, turning on Trump would probably hurt Republican politicians, both individually and as a party, with those voters. Unless that shifts, Republican leaders are likely to stick with Trump, no matter the evidence against him.
Also Check: What Is The Pin The Republicans Are Wearing
Trump Jr Says He Will Run Against Liz Cheney
The son of Former President Trump told Politico Playbook he would run for Liz Cheney’s Wyoming seat.
“I hear it’s lovely during primary season,” Donald Jr. said, implying his intentions to take the seat from the GOP lawmaker who voted to impeach his father.
The primary won’t be held until August 2022 – but Trump Jr’s message was a clear warning to the congresswoman that the Trump family won’t forget she was one of ten House Republicans to vote to impeach, the;Daily Mail reports.
These Republican Senators Could Vote To Remove Donald Trump From Office
While President Donald Trump’s exoneration in the Senate impeachment trial is almost certain, there are several Republicans who could cross party lines to vote for his conviction and removal.
As opening arguments in the case begin on Wednesday, all eyes are on vulnerable GOP lawmakers like Susan Collins of Maine and Cory Gardner of Colorado. The two are among a handful of conservatives who are viewed as the most likely to break away from the Republican Party and the president.
Overall, 20 Republicans would need to join Democrats in order for Trump to be removed from the White House. A two-thirds majority of 67 senators is needed to convict a sitting president during an impeachment trial.
While it’s a seemingly impossible number for Democrats to reach, it appears some progress is already being made. On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was forced to make last-minute changes to the proposed rules for the trial after some Republicans, including Collins, reportedly raised concerns about two provisions.
“She and others raised concerns about the 24 hours of opening statements in 2 days and the admission of the House transcript the record. Her position has been that the trial should follow the Clinton model as much as possible,” a spokeswoman for Collins told the press.
Here are the Republican senators who could vote to convict Trump during the trial:
Recommended Reading: How Many States Are Controlled By Republicans
House Republicans Join Democrats In Voting To Impeach Trump
Washington Ten Republican members of the House, including one of its highest-ranking leaders, joined Democrats in voting to impeach President Trump for inciting the deadly attack on the Capitol last week by a violent mob of his supporters.;
The final vote was 232 to 197, as the 10 Republicans joined all 222 Democrats in voting in favor of the impeachment resolution.;
The article of impeachment will next be delivered to the Senate, where Mr. Trump will be placed on trial. However, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said after the House vote that there is “simply no chance that a fair or serious trial could conclude before President-elect Biden is sworn in next week.”
Mr. Trump is the first president to be impeached twice. When he was;impeached;in 2019 over his attempts to pressure Ukraine to investigate Joe and Hunter Biden, no House Republicans voted in favor of impeaching him. But this time, 10 members of his own party determined his actions warranted impeachment.
Here are the Republicans who voted to impeach Mr. Trump:
Liz Cheney of Wyoming
Tom Rice of South Carolina
Fred Upton of Michigan
David Valadao of California
Cheney, the third-ranking Republican in the House, said in a statement on Tuesday that she would vote to impeach Mr. Trump after he whipped up his supporters Wednesday at a rally not far from the Capitol.
Richard Burr North Carolina
Burr, who has said he will not seek re-election, had previously voted to dismiss the impeachment trial on constitutional grounds. Burr’s term expires in 2022.
“I have listened to the arguments presented by both sides and considered the facts. The facts are clear,” explained Burr in a statement.
“By what he did and by what he did not do, President Trump violated his oath of office to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States,” he explained, adding that he didn’t come to “this decision lightly.”
Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler
Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington State said that she would vote to impeach because she believed that the president had acted in violation of his oath of office.
I understand the argument that the best course is not to further inflame the country or alienate Republican voters, she said. But I am a Republican voter. I believe in our Constitution, individual liberty, free markets, charity, life, justice, peace and this exceptional country. I see that my own party will be best served when those among us choose truth.
Invoking The 25th Amendment
On the evening of January 6, CBS News reported that Cabinet members were discussing invoking the 25th Amendment. The ten Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee, led by U.S. Representative David Cicilline, sent a letter to Pence to “emphatically urge” him to invoke the 25th Amendment and declare Trump “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office”, claiming that he incited and condoned the riots. For invocation, Pence and at least eight Cabinet members, forming a simple majority, would have to consent. Additionally, if challenged by Trump, the second invocation would maintain Pence as acting president, subject to a vote of approval in both houses of Congress, with a two-thirds supermajority necessary in each chamber to sustain. However, Congress would not have needed to act before January 20 for Pence to remain acting president until Biden was inaugurated, per the timeline described in Section 4.
On the same day, the House of Representatives voted to call for Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment. The resolution passed with 223 in favor, 205 against, and 5 not voting; Adam Kinzinger was the only Republican to join a unified Democratic Caucus.
Opinionwe Want To Hear What You Think Please Submit A Letter To The Editor
Boebert live-tweeted about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s location during the Capitol insurrection Jan. 6 as Pelosi, second in line to the presidency, was being rushed to a secure location. Greene, among other offenses, made in 2018 and 2019 suggesting that she supported executing prominent Democrats.
Some of the senators who endorsed Paul’s motion Tuesday might be tempted to think they can simply move on from Trump and therefore want to avoid an impeachment trial so his entire shameful presidency can be forgotten as quickly as possible.
But they’ve helped to create a disaster much bigger than Trump. By giving in to him at every turn, Republicans helped create the epidemic of conspiracy theories and alternative facts rampant in the Republican Party.
Perhaps most consequentially, they endorsed his Big Lie about the election. It wasn’t just Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Josh Hawley of Missouri who propagated fantasies about widespread voter fraud, irregularities and a “steal.” Fourteen Senate Republicans announced before the attack on the Capitol that they planned to object to counting at least one state’s electoral votes, even though Trump had won none of his more than 60 lawsuits trying to overturn the results and even though no evidence of widespread voter fraud was found by election officials in any state regardless of party.
How Many House Votes Are Needed To Impeach Trump
In the lower chamber, controlled by the Democrats, a simple majority is required to pass the resolution. Democrats currently hold 222 seats to the Republicans 211, with two vacant. Even without cross-party support, Democrats will have no issue clearing the first hurdle to impeachment proceedings.
As in Trumps first impeachment trial a year ago, accusing the president of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, the eventual outcome will be decided by the Senate. Until 20 January, Republicans hold the same narrow advantage they enjoyed a year ago with 52 seats to the Democrats 48. After the Democratic victory in the Georgia run-off, there will be an even split of 50-50 in the Senate, with Vice-President elect Kamala Harris holding the tie-breaking vote.
Read Also: Did Trump Say He Loves The Poorly Educated
Mcconnell Open To Convicting Trump In Impeachment Trial
WASHINGTON Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell pointedly did not rule out Wednesday that he might eventually vote to convict the now twice-impeached President Donald Trump, but he also blocked a quick Senate impeachment trial.
Minutes after the House voted 232-197 to impeach Trump, McConnell said in a letter to his GOP colleagues that hes not determined whether Trump should be convicted in the Senates upcoming proceedings. The House impeachment articles charge that Trump incited insurrection by exhorting supporters who violently attacked the Capitol last week, resulting in five deaths and a disruption of Congress.
I have not made a final decision on how I will vote and I intend to listen to the legal arguments when they are presented to the Senate, McConnell wrote.
McConnells burgeoning alienation from Trump, plus the 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach him, underscored how the GOPs long, reflexive support and condoning of Trumps actions was eroding.
McConnells views were first reported by The New York Times.
Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., has said he would definitely consider House impeachment articles.
Theres A Surprisingly Plausible Path To Removing Trump From Office
It would take just three Republican senators to turn the impeachment vote into a secret ballot. Itâs not hard to imagine what would happen then.
A secret impeachment ballot might sound crazy, but itâs actually quite possible. In fact, it would take only three senators to allow for that possibility.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said he will immediately move to hold a trial to adjudicate the articles of impeachment if and when the Senate receives them from the House of Representatives. Article I, Section 3, of the Constitution does not set many parameters for the trial, except to say that âthe Chief Justice shall preside,â and âno Person shall be convicted without the Concurrence of two thirds of the Members present.â That means the Senate has sole authority to draft its own rules for the impeachment trial, without judicial or executive branch oversight.
During the last impeachment of a president, Bill Clinton, the rules were hammered out by Democrats and Republicans in a collaborative process,as then Senate leaders Trent Lott and Tom Daschle recently pointed out in a Washington Post op-ed. The rules passed unanimously. Thatâs unlikely this time, given the polarization that now defines our politics. McConnell and his fellow Republicans are much more likely to dictate the rules with little input from Democrats.
Read Also: Impeachment Polls In Swing States
How The Televised Hearings Have Moved Public Opinion On Impeachment
In terms of partisan lean,1 Arizona leans red, and West Virginia is super conservative. But I doubt electoral considerations matter that much to either Manchin nor Sinema they arent up for reelection until 2024, when Trumps impeachment will likely be a distant memory.
So I would bet that both Manchin and Sinema vote against Trumps removal, preserving their brands as separate from the broader Democratic Party.