Senate votes to acquit President Trump in impeachment trial

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As expected, the Senate has voted the acquit President Trump and bring the impeachment trial to an end.

A total of 67 votes were needed to remove the President from office on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, but the Republican-controlled chamber voted 52-48 against impeachment on the first charge and 53-47 on the second. The votes were largely done along party lines with the lone exception of Utah Senator Mitt Romney voting to convict the President on the charge of abuse of power.

Mississippi Senators Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith voted to acquit the President on both counts. In a statement following the vote, Wicker echoed his speech from the Senate Floor on Wednesday, stating that he believes the impeachment process was being used by Democrats for political posturing.

“The founders of our nation gave Congress the power to remove a president from office in extreme circumstances, with overwhelming evidence, and with broad support. The House impeachment managers failed to meet this high standard in every respect.”

“From the beginning, the effort to impeach President Trump was a partisan exercise with a predetermined outcome. The articles passed by the House did not allege a crime, let alone the ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ required by the Constitution. The House managers have contradicted themselves time and again by claiming their case is proved ‘beyond any doubt,’ while simultaneously admitting their case is incomplete by requesting additional witnesses and evidence. With only unsubstantiated accusations of actions that do not constitute crimes, there is no reasonable argument for removing this duly-elected president from office.”

“The events that brought us to this point are an indication of America’s real and unfortunate political divisions. But today’s vote is also a testament to the wisdom and endurance of our system of government. The checks and balances afforded to Congress cannot be abused for partisan gain or to deny the will of voters by overturning an election.”

“I hope Americans can put this episode behind us, and that Congress can now return to the work of the people.”

Senator Hyde-Smith spoke on the Senate Floor this morning ahead of the vote and said that after listening to both arguments, she saw no grounds for impeachment.

“Those prosecuting the President failed on a legal and constitutional basis to produce the evidence required to undertake the very serious act of removing a duly elected President from this office.”

The House voted to impeach the President in December. Among those voting against impeachment were Mississippi Congressmen Trent Kelly (MS01), Michael Guest (MS03) and Steven Palazzo (MS04). Congressman Bennie Thompson (MS02) voted with his fellow House Democrats to convict the President on both charges.

“The articles of impeachment are the culmination of a three-year political witch hunt against our President. Rammed through the House in an unprecedented and shallow fashion, the allegations have proven to be nothing more than a messaging failure ahead of the presidential election. Our country must move on from this sham and focus on the real issues facing America.” – Congressman Palazzo

The acquittal of President Trump was the expected result after the Senate blocked a motion to allow additional witnesses in the trial on Friday.

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