Shelby, Tuberville both vote to acquit private citizen Donald Trump on impeachment charge
Former President Donald J. Trump for the second time has been acquitted following a U.S. Senate impeachment trial, although this one came after his term of office.
Trump, charged on a single article of impeachment with inciting an insurrection against the United States, was acquitted on Saturday afternoon, as 57 senators voted to convict and 43 chose to acquit. Two-thirds of those voting were needed to convict.
U.S. Senators Richard Shelby (R-AL) and Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) voted to acquit.
Both of Alabama’s senators had previously voted against Trump being the subject of an impeachment trial as a private citizen.
“The Constitution speaks of removing a sitting president, not a private citizen,” Shelby said in a statement following the acquittal on Saturday. “I recently voted to dismiss this case based on its questionable constitutionality. The Framers were clear in limiting impeachment to the President, Vice President, and civil officers of the United States. That is why today, I voted to acquit.”
Likewise, a separate statement from Tuberville began, “I had concerns with the lack of due process and constitutionality of this trial going in, and I voted twice to say so. But I had a duty as a juror to listen to the arguments of both sides and keep an open mind, which I did. After hearing the arguments presented, I voted to not convict for a number of reasons, including the fact that I don’t think the Senate has the authority to try a private citizen.”
“There are no winners today,” he continued. “The American people lost. Our country is hurting from a global pandemic, and rather than addressing the serious needs of our constituents we wasted a full week on an unconstitutional trial.”
“Now it’s time for us as a country to move on. We need to remember that at the end of the day we’re on the same team: the American team. Both sides can do better at remembering that,” Tuberville concluded.
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn