By: John Stracco
In a less intense than usual manner (let's try and not normalize this impeachment thing), the 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, was acquitted (to no one’s surprise), despite high hopes of some democrats. In all fairness, the house managers were able to achieve the most bipartisan impeachment in American History (though that fault mostly lies within the actions of Mr. Trump), with 7 Republicans dissenting to the minority side. Those 7 Republicans were Pat Toomey (PA), Mitt Romney (UT), Lisa Murkowski (AK), Richard Burr (NC), Susan Collins (ME), Ben Sasse (NE), and Bill Cassidy (LA).
Some noticeable things about these seven senators are that Romney, Sasse, Collins, and Murkowski are all moderates, meaning they were heavily expected to vote the way they did. Senators Burr and Toomey are notable because they are both retiring in the 2022 midterm elections, meaning they do not have to worry about serious in-party rebuke. Lastly, Senator Cassidy just won reelection, meaning by the time he is up again, his constituents will not be too worried or remember this vote.
With that being said, the acquittal is telling of what the republican party wishes to be in the upcoming years: the party of Trump. While minority leader McConnell said the former president should be prosecuted, he also stated his belief that the trial was unconstitutional as justification for his acquittal, despite having the opportunity to bring the articles up while Trump was still in office. In a certain sense, this trial is not only symbolic in the continuous two-party struggle in American politics, but also in the fact that there is political support in Congress for the actions that took place on January 6th. The point is that were this to be Joe Biden, the Republicans would be down his throat and the Democrats would scramble in defense, just like Trump did. Joe Biden is yet to prove he could unify America and Trump’s trial was the first test. His next- Covid relief and vaccinations.