Trump impeachment trial may wrap up on Saturday, but with no conviction

WION Web Team
Washington, DC, United States of America Published: Feb 13, 2021, 05:25 PM(IST)

FILE -- President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign event for Georgia’s Republican senators in Dalton, Ga., Jan. 4, 2021. In the aftermath of President Trump’s efforts to subvert the election, state officials face harassment and threats, and a district attorney is weighing an inquiry into the president’s actions. (Erin Schaff/The New York Times) Photograph:( The New York Times )

Story highlights

Trump is the first US president to be impeached twice and the first to face trial after leaving office. If convicted, the Senate could then vote to bar him from running for office again.

Donald Trump's second impeachment trial will likely conclude on Saturday, but a conviction -- on whether the former US president incited his supporters to attack the Capitol on January 6 in a last-ditch effort to stay in power after his November election defeat -- does not seem to be a possibility.

Trump is the first US president to be impeached twice and the first to face trial after leaving office. If convicted, the Senate could then vote to bar him from running for office again.

Conviction is seen as unlikely, however, as at least 17 Republicans in the 100-seat chamber would have to join all 50 Democrats to find the former president guilty.

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And so far, only six Republicans voted with Democrats to move forward with the trial, rejecting an argument made by other Republican Senators that the Constitution does not allow Congress to impeach a president who has already left office.

The Senate is due to convene at 10 am (1500 GMT), and a final vote could come in the afternoon.

It's believed that Trump urged his followers to march to the Capitol and "get wild" in an effort to prevent lawmakers from certifying his defeat to Democrat Joe Biden in the presidential election. Five people died in the chaos.

Trump's lawyers gave conflicting answers on Friday when asked if Trump knew Pence was in danger when he issued his tweet. Several Republican senators said they still had questions about Trump's role.

House Democrats, on their part, have argued that Trump set the stage for violence through repeated -- and baseless -- claims that the election results were fraudulent. They say he summoned the mob to Washington, gave the crowd its marching orders and did nothing to stop the violence as it played out on television.

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Trump refused to testify in the trial. His first impeachment trial, which stemmed from his efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate Biden, ended in an acquittal a year ago in what was then a Republican-controlled Senate.

(with inputs)

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