The second impeachment push of Democrats against former President Donald Trump was “dead on arrival” in the Senate after 45 Republican senators voted in favor of a motion ruling the articles of impeachment delivered by the House as unconstitutional.
Senator Rand Paul called a procedural vote in the Senate regarding holding a proceeding for the impeachment arguing that the Senate does not have the constitutional authority to hold a trial after the former Republican President has left office.
Senate rejects Sen. Paul's motion to declare fmr. Pres. Trump's impeachment trial unconstitutional, in 55-45 vote. The 5 Republicans senators who voted with Democrats to proceed with the trial were Sens. Collins, Murkowski, Romney, Sasse, and Toomey, @GarrettHaake reports. pic.twitter.com/Lqpmo9VWjr
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) January 26, 2021
The Democrat-led House delivered the articles of impeachment to the Senate on Monday where the former president was charged of allegedly “encourag[ing] … imminent lawless action at the Capitol” after a chaos ensued in Capitol Hill on January 6, the same day that lawmakers met in a Joint Session to confirm the Electoral College votes for now President Joe Biden.
All but five Republican senators voted in favor of Senator Paul’s motion against holding the proceeding including Senate Majority Mitch McConnell — while only five voted to proceed with the trial: Senators Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Mitt Romney (Utah), Ben Sasse (Nebraska) and Patrick J. Toomey (Pennsylvania).
Meanwhile, all 50 Democratic senators voted against Paul’s objection to holding the trial.
In his motion, Senator Paul said voting for a trial to remove someone from office who had already left was “deranged.”
“Impeachment is for removal from office, and the accused here has already left office,” he said, noting that the trial would just “drag our great country down into the gutter of rancor and vitriol, the likes of which has never been seen in our nation’s history.”
The vote outcome will likely render any upcoming trial as “moot” — as it suggests the Democratic side pushing the impeachment of the former president will not have the needed 67 supermajority vote to convict Trump in which at least 17 Republican senators would have to side with the Democrats.
“I think it’s pretty obvious from the vote today that it is extraordinarily unlikely that the president will be convicted,” Senator Collins, who voted for holding the proceeding, said. “Just do the math.”
The Senate just voted on my constitutional point of order.
45 Senators agreed that this sham of a “trial” is unconstitutional.
That is more than will be needed to acquit and to eventually end this partisan impeachment process.
This “trial” is dead on arrival in the Senate.
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) January 26, 2021
“The Senate just voted on my constitutional point of order,” Senator Paul wrote on Twitter shortly after the vote tweeted shortly after the vote. “45 Senators agreed that this sham of a ‘trial’ is unconstitutional.”
He continued: “That is more than will be needed to acquit and to eventually end this partisan impeachment process. This ‘trial’ is dead on arrival in the Senate.”
Earlier, the Senator also motioned that the absence of the Chief Justice in the trial “demonstrates that this is not a trial as a president, but of a private citizen.”
“Therefore I make a point of order that this proceeding, which would try a private citizen and not a president, a vice president, or civil officer violates the Constitution, and is not in order,” he said.
— CSPAN (@cspan) January 26, 2021
In his speech, the Kentucky Senator also slammed Democrats for its relentless effort to “stoke division.’
“Hyper-partisan Democrats are about to drag our great country down into the gutter of rancor and vitriol the likes of which has never been seen in our nation’s history. Instead of doing the nation’s work with their new majorities in the House, the Senate, and the executive branch, Democrats are wasting the nation’s time on a partisan vendetta against a man no longer in office,” Senator Paul said.
Sen. @RandPaul: "This impeachment is nothing more than a partisan exercise designed to further divide the country. Democrats claim to want to unify the country, but impeaching a former president, a private citizen, is the antithesis of unity." pic.twitter.com/W8SHXO2URn
— CSPAN (@cspan) January 26, 2021
“It’s almost as if they have no ability to exist except in opposition to Donald Trump,” he added. “Without him as their boogeyman, they might have to legislate and to actually convince Americans that their policy prescriptions are the right ones.”
"Democrats are about to drag our great country down into the gutter of rancor and vitriol the likes of which has never been seen in our nation’s history… It’s almost as if they have no ability to exist except in opposition to Donald Trump." pic.twitter.com/kiCimV0GIX
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) January 26, 2021
Later on, the Republican senator told reporters that the vote on his motion shows that the trial is over.
“If you voted that it was unconstitutional, how in the world would you ever vote to convict somebody for this?” Senator Paul said. “This vote indicates it’s over. The trial is all over.”
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Source: The Scoop