Trump acquitted for second time following historic Senate impeachment trial

The Senate acquitted former President Donald Trump in his second impeachment trial Saturday, voting that Trump was not guilty of inciting the deadly January 6 riot at the US Capitol — but the verdict amounted to a bipartisan rebuke of the former President with seven Republicans finding him guilty.

The final vote was 57 guilty to 43 not guilty, short of the 67 guilty votes needed to convict. Held exactly one month after the House impeached Trump, the number of Republican senators who voted against Trump ended up higher than even what Trump’s legal team had anticipated, marking a stark departure from the first impeachment trial last year when only one Republican senator, Mitt Romney of Utah, found Trump guilty.
 


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UPDATE: House Impeachment Managers FOLD – Back Off On Witnesses After Trump Legal Team Announces Pelosi Will Be Called In — Closing Arguments Begin!

Democrats flipped the script this morning after their case collapsed on Friday against President Trump.

Democrats now want to change the rules and call in witnesses. This comes after Senator McConnell announced he will vote to acquit.

This comes after Republican Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington leaked news on a January 6, 2021 phone call between House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and former President Donald Trump.

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Aim of Trump Impeachment Is to ‘Chill and Criminalize Speech’ that Opposes Leftist Agenda: Tom Fitton

Tom Fitton, conservative activist and president of Judicial Watch, told The Epoch Times’ “American Thought Leaders” in an interview that he believes the aim of bringing an incitement of insurrection charge against former President Donald Trump is to “chill and criminalize speech” that opposes the agenda of those on the political left.

Calling Trump’s second impeachment trial “anti-constitutional,” Fitton remarked that it amounts to an attempt to silence the voices of those raising issues of concern that run counter to certain political objectives.

“It’s really an attack on civil rights and President Trump, the civil rights of his supporters who share his concerns about the issues he’s raised,” Fitton said.

“And what the left is trying to do is outlaw opposition to its agenda. Number one on the list is concerns about election integrity,” he said. “If you raise concerns about it, you need to be de-platformed, or worse.”

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The Senate’s Cadaver Synod: The Trial Of Citizen Trump Would Raise Serious Constitutional Questions

Below is my column in USA Today on the upcoming Senate trial of President Donald Trump. The Hill recently my second column on why the best defense of Trump could be no defense — to skip the Senate trial and force a threshold vote on the constitutionality of the trial of an ex-president.

Here is my column:

With the second impeachment of President Donald Trump, the Congress is set for one of the most bizarre moments in constitutional history: the removal of someone who has already left office. The retroactive removal would be a testament to the timeliness of rage. While it is not without precedent, it is without logic.

The planned impeachment trial of Donald Trump after he leaves office would be our own version of the Cadaver Synod.  In 897, Pope Stephen VI and his supporters continued to seethe over the action of Pope Formosus, who not only died in 896 but was followed by another pope, Boniface VI.  After the brief rule of Boniface VI, Pope Stephen set about to even some scores. He pulled Formosus out of his tomb, propped him up in court, and convicted him of variety of violations of canon law. Formosus was then taken out, three fingers cut off, and eventually thrown in the Tiber River.

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Trump won’t be able to use his greatest weapon during his impeachment trial

President Trump, shown, will have to defend himself during his impeachment trial without a social media presence. Image source: Kevin Dietsch – Pool via CNP/MEGA
  • The Trump impeachment trial will kick off on Tuesday, and the president will have to defend himself during it without one of his signature weapons — a social media presence.
  • Trump’s social media ban across platforms like Facebook and Twitter remains in place following the January 6 riots at the US Capitol.
  • Erroneous news reports suggested that Trump in recent days has returned to social media, with a post on the social platform beloved by the far-right called Gab.

With the Trump impeachment trial set to get underway on Tuesday, the former president’s legal team filed its first pretrial legal brief accusing the whole thing of being nothing more than “political theater” — which is reminiscent of the weapon Trump once enjoyed that he’ll have to do without during this impeachment.

Last time around — and, really, up to the aftermath of January’s riots and attack on the US Capitol complex — President Trump enjoyed a robust, multi-platform social media presence. One that allowed him to yell, rant, and lob political bombs at enemies both real and perceived across Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, in addition to making the fact-free declarations that so often drove countless news cycles. This time around, he’s facing the first-ever second impeachment of a US president, one that Trump will have to undergo without the aid of a social media presence anymore. Even though there have been erroneous news reports in the past few days that President Trump is now posting on the social networking platform beloved by the far-right, called Gab.

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Trump trial pending, McConnell calls it ‘vote of conscience’

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial is likely to start after Joe Biden’s inauguration, and the Republican leader, Mitch McConnell, is telling senators their decision on whether to convict the outgoing president over the Capitol riot will be a “vote of conscience.”

The timing for the trial, the first of a president no longer in office, has not yet been set. But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made it clear Friday that Democrats intend to move swiftly on Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID aid and economic recovery package to speed up vaccinations and send Americans relief. Biden is set to take the oath of office Wednesday.

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Pelosi puts Swalwell back on Homeland Security panel despite spy scandal

Eric Swalwell was renamed to the House Committee on Homeland Security on January 15, 2021.

WASHINGTON — Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell is joining the House Committee on Homeland Security one month after it was revealed he was targeted by a suspected Chinese spy.

The California lawmaker — who was revealed to have been duped by a Chinese honey-trap spy who cozied to him and other pols in a bid to infiltrate the US political system — announced his appointment back onto the sensitive post in a tweet on Friday afternoon.

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Amid impeachment, Pompeo says Trump should win Nobel for Israel-Gulf peace

US secretary of state tweets photo from signing of Abraham Accords between Israel and UAE and Bahrain and tags prize committee

US President Donald Trump, center, with from left, Bahrain Foreign Minister Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Trump, and United Arab Emirates Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahyan, during the Abraham Accords signing ceremony on the South Lawn of the White House, September 15, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo suggested Wednesday that President Donald Trump should be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for promoting Arab-Israeli ties.

Pompeo’s suggestion, made on his official Twitter account, came as the House was voting on impeaching Trump, accusing him of rallying a violent mob of supporters to attack the US Capitol last week.

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Turley: Quick New Impeachment Would Damage the Constitution

Constitutional scholar Jonathan Turley said that the swift impeachment of President Donald Trump over his speech to protesters—some of whom later entered the U.S. Capitol building in the midst of chaos—would be unwise and damage precedent.

“With seeking his removal for incitement, Democrats would gut not only the impeachment standard but also free speech, all in a mad rush to remove Trump just days before his term ends,” Turley, who himself was an impeachment inquiry witness months ago, wrote on The Hill.

Before the Capitol incident, Trump delivered a speech to his supporters alleging election fraud and noted the irregularities during the Nov. 3 contest.

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