Donald Trump’s impeachment is historic. We all watched the news coverage grow like wildfire ever since the House of Representatives decided to have an impeachment inquiry on Donald Trump. Following his subsequent impeachment, he adds to the small list of other U.S. Presidents who have been impeached. Nevertheless, the results of the impeachment trial were anything but shocking. Many knew he would be acquitted of the charges in the Republican-controlled Senate, but one thing that people did not expect is how well this helped Trump and will inevitably call for his reelection in the 2020 election.
From January 21st to February 4th, 2020, the Senate trial included opening and closing arguments from the Democratic House impeachment managers and the President’s defence team, along with a 16-hour questioning by the senators. Thus, concluding with a vote that ultimately acquitted Trump on the final day.
Outside of the trial, several senators have had time to talk about the impeachment trial on the Senate floor. Amid the media circus and impeachment trial, the controversy over whether to have witnesses in the proceedings was a heavy and pressing topic. Senators voted not to have any at all.
Although the acquittal vote was pretty much set in stone before the trial even happened, there was still a slight chance for some Republican senators to sway. Throughout the trial process, key senators to look out for were Senator Susan Collins, Senator Lisa Murkowski, and Senator Mitt Romney.
All of these senators were on the fence about their vote, and made it known they were waiting to hear the arguments of both sides before making their final decision.
All it took was 51 Republican votes to acquit Trump. The two historic votes, 52 to 48 and 53 to 47, conclusively acquitted President Trump of two charges: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress )
In a shocking move, Senator Romney decided to be the lone Republican to vote for removing the president from office. He stated, “The president did in fact pressure a foreign government to corrupt our election process. And really, corrupting an election process in a democratic republic is about as abusive and egregious an act against the Constitution…”
After the Senate trial vote, it was to be expected that Trump would bask in his glory and gloat about the acquittal. In a prayer breakfast and press conference, he made several attacks against Democrats, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Mitt Romney. In typical Trump fashion, he used snide and crude remarks against anybody who is not for Donald Trump. To go further, President Trump moved vastly to clear his administration of perceived disloyal members in his cabinet. It did not take long for Trump to remove Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman and U.S. Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland after the impeachment trial. The two men were key witnesses in the impeachment hearings. This was a clear message to anybody who is for Trump that siding against him will not be tolerated.
The Effects of the Impeachment Trial
Despite several Republicans hoping the president would “learn his lesson” from the impeachment trial, the opposite holds true. President Trump has shown he has little remorse for what happened and believes he did nothing wrong.
Trump seems emboldened by his acquittal with the Republican-controlled Senate and is making moves to let the world know he is Commander in Chief. One of the main effects the impeachment trial seemed to do was raise his approval ratings. While the margin was slim on how Americans felt about Trump’s impeachment, 49% of Americans did not want to remove Trump from office. Furthermore, the impeachment trial has not changed the minds of Americans attitude towards Trump.
According to the latest Gallup Poll, Trump’s approval rating has risen to 49%, which is an all-time high since he has been in office. It did not matter how well the Democrats laid out the facts of the case. The reality of the situation is President Trump still has a strong base that will follow him throughout the election; and despite the candidates for the Democratic Party, it may not make a difference in November. Americans seem to turn a blind eye to corruption and will lower the standard of the presidency.