Last week, the House impeachment executives made an incredibly strong case against Donald Trump. The former president’s lawyers struggled to convince anyone that they were innocent.
Still, 43 Republicans decided to vote for the president to be acquitted. When they explain why, many are suggesting that they found Trump guilty. This was the pace that Mitch McConnell followed during his Saturday speech.
John Thune from South Dakota is the number 2 Republican in the Senate. He recently published an explanation of his vote. Like McConnell, he basically said he thought Trump was guilty but let him get away with “constitutional reasons”.
The statement began: “The impeachment process has ended and former President Trump has been acquitted. My acquittal should not be viewed as discharge for his conduct on January 6, 2021, or in the days and weeks prior to that. What former President Trump did to undermine confidence in our electoral system and disrupt the peaceful transfer of power is inexcusable. “
In the next paragraph, however, Thune apologized for the former president’s actions. He continued:
“But he’s no longer president. The Constitution makes it clear that the main purpose of impeachment is impeachment, and I believe that is what the founders intended. I am very concerned that the Senate will punish a private citizen with the sole intention of excluding him from future office. Our founders conceived impeachment as an extreme means and warned against its use as a political weapon. We should heed their caution. In our democracy, questions of representation should be left to the people, as the founders intended. “
You can read the entire statement here
Todd Neikirk is a New Jersey-based policy and technology writer. His work has been featured on psfk.com, foxsports.com and hillreporter.com. He enjoys sports, politics, comics, and spends time with his family on the waterfront.