Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) vowed to hold an impeachment trial Wednesday, signaling he wasn’t on board with a plan in the works to hold a censure vote on former President Donald Trump if it was used as a trial replacement.
“Make no mistake: There will be a full and fair trial on convicting Donald Trump for high crimes and misdemeanors. He is charged with inciting an insurrection,” tweeted Schumer on Wednesday afternoon. “The evidence against him will be presented in living color for the nation and every one of us to see.”
Schumer’s statement comes a day after Axios reported that Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Tim Kaine (D-VA) were looking at crafting a resolution to censure Trump and bar him from holding office. According to ABC News, Collins said Wednesday that the resolution could be voted on “in lieu of” a trial, but Kaine has not been clear on whether he’d still want to see a trial.
“It declares that the attack on the Capitol was an insurrection against the Constitution of the United States. It was an effort to stop Congress from undertaking its constitutional duty to count electoral votes,” Kaine, the 2016 Democratic vice presidential nominee, told CNN of the potential resolution in an interview Tuesday. “It then finds that President Trump gave aid and comfort to those who carried out the insurrection by repeatedly lying about the election, slandering election officials, pressuring others to come to Washington for a wild event and encouraging them to come up to Congress. Those two findings, that it was an insurrection and that President Trump gave aid and comfort to the insurrectionists is language pulled right out of section 3 of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution. And that amendment says anybody who has taken an oath to defend the Constitution who either engages in an insurrection against the Constitution or gives aid and comfort to those who do will be barred from office again.”
It’s not clear whether such language could actually bar Trump from office. Although 2/3 of the Senate is needed to convict an official who was impeached, in past successful convictions, the Senate has also voted on whether to bar a person from holding office in the future, reports AP. That vote, unlike conviction, only requires a majority of senators.
During a procedural vote on Tuesday, forty-five Republican senators voted to dismiss the Article of Impeachment against Trump, arguing that the Senate no longer had the Constitutional authority to try Trump. The vote failed.
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