Republicans senators who voted to acquit Trump have no regrets: report

 December 25, 2023

Nearly three years after Republicans made a half hearted effort to banish Donald Trump from their party, he is stronger than ever.

Republican senators who voted to acquit Trump of “insurrection” said they have no regrets about their vote, despite Trump’s remarkable comeback years later.

Republican Senate backs Trump

Trump is widely expected to be the GOP’s nominee for president in 2024, and he has been edging out Biden in recent polls.

His continued dominance was confirmed when Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) echoed Trump’s claims Sunday about the 2020 election being stolen. Most Republican voters agree with Trump, but the claim has been widely rejected by establishment Republicans. 

“While I voted to certify the 2020 election, there were problems. It is very unnerving to see the justice system try to criminalize a president for questioning and challenging an election,” Graham wrote on X.

It’s a remarkable shift from the immediate aftermath of January 6th, when Trump was being condemned by Republicans and pressure was mounting to bar him from office.

Failed effort to thwart Trump

That effort failed - and fast forward to the present, Democrats are scrambling to keep Trump off the ballot in different states.

Two Republican senators who acquitted Trump of “insurrection” told the Hill, anonymously, that they have no regrets despite their misgivings about Trump and his influence on the party.

“The way I look at it is the standard is high because you’re undermining the will of the American people,” one senator said. “If you can’t meet that threshold, it’s inappropriate to convict for the purposes for keeping out of office.” 

Unlike the fiery House, The Republican Senate has been home to some of Trump’s most reluctant supporters - and vocal critics, like Utah senator Mitt Romney.

Trump dominant….

The GOP’s revered Senate leader Mitch McConnell (KY) ended up voting to acquit Trump despite holding him responsible for the Capitol unrest.

A second Republican senator said that it would have been too costly for McConnell to dump Trump, even if he knew Trump would make a political comeback years later.

“I think he would have made the calculated decision that he would not have been able to be leader of the caucus after that. He would have been deciding to be a senior committeeman for the next six years,” the senator said.

Republicans who voted to convict Trump, like Lisa Murkowski (AL) are dismayed by Trump’s incredible resilience.

“I think they’re looking at this and [think,] ‘It’s like a zombie coming back from the dead.’ He was political roadkill. Two impeachments and now these indictments — four indictments — and you’re telling me he’s the heir apparent?” she said.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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