The Senate has voted to acquit Donald Trump, the Associated Press reports, making him the first president in United States history to not only get impeached twice but receive an acquittal in two separate impeachment trials.
Democrats needed 17 Republicans to join their side in order to achieve the two-thirds majority needed to convict the former president of inciting the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, during which five people died. Only seven GOP senators did so in the end, per CNN: Richard Burr of North Carolina, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Mitt Romney of Utah, Ben Sasse of Nebraska, and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, one of the Republican senators who voted to acquit, gave a confusing statement after news of the vote broke, The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman reports: “There’s no question—none—that Pres. Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day.” No question, yet he voted not to convict? Make it make sense, turtle man.
Anyway, speaking of self-serving press statements, Trump, who’s now free to hold federal office again thanks to Saturday’s verdict, released one of his own following the acquittal, inaccurately framing the trial as an example of how Democrats are trying to “persecute, blacklist, cancel, and suppress all people and viewpoints with whom or which they disagree,” per CNN.
Trump also noted in his statement that he will always “be a champion for the unwavering rule of law,” which isn’t all that surprising. I mean, just look at how our broken, unjust legal system came through for him today.