Trump acquitted by Senate on articles of impeachment for abuse of power and obstruction of justice

Posted at 4:18 PM, Feb 05, 2020

President Donald Trump has been acquitted on both articles of impeachment on Wednesday by the United States Senate, the first article by a mostly party-line vote of 52-48 voting for acquittal. The vote on the second article of impeachment ended with 47 Democrats voting guilty, while all 53 Republicans voted not guilty.

A two-thirds vote is required to remove a president from office.

Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah was the lone Republican joining all 47 Democrats in voting in favor of removing Trump from office on the first article of impeachment. Romney, the Republican Party's 2012 standard-bearer, became the first senator in U.S. history to vote to remove a president from the same party.

"I will tell my children and their children that I did my duty to the best of my ability, believing that my country expected it of me," Romney said. "I will only be one name among many, no more or less, to future generations of Americans who look at the record of this trial."

It was not known until late on Wednesday how Romney and some Democrats from states that voted for Trump in 2016 would vote. West Virginia's Joe Manchin and Arizona's Kyrsten Sinema both announced they would vote in favor of conviction moments before Wednesday's vote.

The first article was for abuse of power, and accused Trump of, "Using the powers of his high office, President Trump solicited the interference of a foreign government, Ukraine, in the 2020 United States Presidential election."

The second article is for obstruction of Congress, as House Democrats accused Trump of blocking witnesses and evidence from the White House as part of the House's impeachment inquiry.

In December, Trump became the third sitting US president to be impeached by the House, following Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton. Both Johnson and Clinton were also acquitted. Johnson avoided being removed from office by a single vote.

Trump said he would speak at noon Thursday.

The White House also released a statement following the trial.

"The sham impeachment attempt concocted by Democrats ended in the full vindication and exoneration of President Donald J. Trump. As we have said all along, he is not guilty. The Senate voted to reject the baseless articles of impeachment, and only the President’s political opponents – all Democrats, and one failed Republican presidential candidate – voted for the manufactured impeachment articles," the statement read.