Impeachment Vote Reveals Senate GOP Torn Over Dealing With Trump
Much to the chagrin of the members of the Congress and others, including Vice President Mike Pence, who was in the Capitol last week for the Congressional certification of President-elect Joe Biden's victory, a group of pro-Trump supporters broke into the building.
Several Democrats accused Trump of inciting the Capitol riots by urging his supporters to "fight back." McConnell and several other Senate Republicans believe that Trump has committed offenses that call for his immediate removal from office. However, getting McConnell and about 16 other Republicans to pronounce him guilty after his presidency comes to an end is another question entirely.
One GOP source familiar with the discussions said the Senate Republican Conference did not really love Trump anyway, and everybody is waiting with bated breath for this to end. However, it remains to be seen how many people will come forward to convict the outgoing president once he leaves office next week.
Some senior GOP sources told CNN that several Republicans aren't sure if Trump's actions call for the extraordinary step of restricting him from ever serving in the office again once he leaves the White House. Republicans say it depends on the case the House impeachment managers build, if new details surface about Trump and the Capitol riot and whether emotions are still raw at the time of voting, to decide whether Republicans will move forward with their decision to end Trump's political career.
In an interview with Bill Hemmer Reports Thursday, RealClearPolitics co-founder Tom Bevan said Trump isn't likely to be convicted in any Senate impeachment trial, despite ten House Republicans joining House Democrats to vote for the reproval. Bevan told Hemmer that getting to the number needed to remove Trump from office calls for a significant shift as far as the number of senators that would vote for this is concerned, adding it is never going to happen.
Bevan went on to say that Republican votes to convict Trump of the "incitement of insurrection" article" is likely to come from Senators Mitt Romney of Utah and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska. Moreover, Senator Pat Toomey, who is slated to resign in 2022, had told Fox News that Trump's offenses are impeachable, alluding to the Capitol riot, and he also called him to leave the office.
Senator Ben Sasse told CBS News recently that he was considering the House article of impeachment. Bevan also noted that Trump realizes that if he accepts pardon, he will be admitting to committing a crime, so it remains to be seen whether or not the outgoing president will accept a pardon.