By Dayo Benson Editor Politics,Law/Human Rights, New York
In what appeared like an anti-climax, the United States Senate, Wednesday evening, expectedly acquitted President Donald John Trump, of the two articles of impeachment by the House of Representatives.
President Trump was acquitted by the Republican controlled Senate with majority votes of 48-52, on the first article, “Abuse of Power.” Republican Senator Mitt Romney, broke ranks to vote against his party in the first article. Trump was also acquitted of the second article, “Obstruction of Congress” by 47-53 votes.
The anticipated acquitted came five days after the Senate voted against calling new witnesses and subpoena documents.
The historic event also came on the heels of the State of the Union Address which the President delivered Tuesday night before a joint session of the Congress. Curiously, the address was silent on the Senate trial.
Order 23 of the Senate Rules and Order of Procedure requires two third majority to convict and remove the President from office. That requires 67 votes. Conversely, the rule however requires 38 votes to acquit him.
Consequently, Presiding Chief Justice John Robert, citing Senate Order 23, ruled that the judgment of the Senate should be communicated to the Secretary of State and the House of Representatives.
Trump’s case was the third time in the United States history for a President to be impeached by the Congress, but acquitted by the Senate. The first was President Andrew Jonson in 1868, and President Bill Clinton in 1999. Trump was however the first President to be impeached in his first term in office.
The acquittal brought to an end the Senate trial which began January 16,2020. President Trump is expected to react officially to the acquittal at 12 noon, Thursday, February 6, 2020. He had repeatedly disparaged the impeachment by the House of Representatives as “a hoax and a witch-hunt.”