Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Cancel Anytime
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

Former U.S. president Donald Trump gestures to the crowd as he arrives to speak at a campaign rally at Williams Arena in Greenville, N.C. on July 17, 2019.

Carolyn Kaster/The Associated Press

President Joe Biden is hoping to turn the page after the U.S. Senate acquittal of Donald Trump over the deadly storming of the Capitol building, even as Mr. Trump is vowing to stage a political comeback.

Mr. Biden declared that the country would learn from the threat to its political system to ensure that such violence never happens again. He is hoping his administration and Congress can now focus on pandemic relief, immigration and his cabinet appointments.

Guilty or not guilty? Eight experts deliver their Trump impeachment verdicts

Trump has been acquitted, but it is not over. This story has no discernible end

“This sad chapter in our history has reminded us that democracy is fragile,” the President said in a statement from Camp David. “Each of us has a duty and responsibility as Americans, and especially as leaders, to defend the truth and to defeat the lies.”

Story continues below advertisement

But Mr. Trump, unencumbered by the prohibition on seeking office that a conviction might have brought, is unrepentant. The trial confirmed the grip he still holds on the Republican legislative caucus. And he said he would soon launch the next phase of his political career.

“Our historic, patriotic and beautiful movement to Make America Great Again has only just begun,” he said in a statement.

As the dust settled after the former president’s historic second impeachment trial, it was unclear whether the country could step back from the brink of political strife, or if a dangerous new precedent for presidential behaviour had been set.

The Senate voted 57 to 43 in favour of convicting Mr. Trump of incitement of insurrection, with seven Republicans joining all Democrats and Independents. It marked the most bipartisan presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history and only the second in which a majority of senators supported conviction. But it fell well short of the two-thirds needed to convict.

The trial had played out over five days at the scene of the alleged crime, a heavily fortified Capitol surrounded by National Guard troops, barely a month after the worst attack on the building since the War of 1812.

Democratic legislators serving as prosecutors argued that the Jan. 6 riot was the culmination of both Mr. Trump’s bid to overturn his election defeat and his years of encouraging violence by supporters. They reconstructed the storming in vivid detail, using never-before-seen security video that showed the mob beating up police officers, ransacking the Senate chamber and trying to hunt down fleeing politicians. Five people died.

“The president summoned the mob, assembled the mob, incited it, lit the match,” Maryland Congressman Jamie Raskin, the lead impeachment manager, said in his closing argument.

Story continues below advertisement

Mr. Trump’s lawyers focused much of their defence on attacking Democrats and often avoided directly addressing Mr. Trump’s behaviour. Michael van der Veen, a member of the former president’s legal team, accused the Democrats of “hatred” and branded the proceedings a “show trial.”

Impeachment has left the Republicans deeply divided. While many legislators are angry at Mr. Trump, believing he endangered their lives, the vast majority of the caucus ultimately voted to acquit in the face of his overwhelming popularity with their base. One CNBC poll last week found that 74 per cent of Republicans want Mr. Trump to stay active in politics, even as 54 per cent of all voters want him to play no further public role.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell embodied this dissonance. He voted in Mr. Trump’s favour at the end of the trial, but then promptly condemned him on the floor of the Senate. “President Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day,” he said.

The seven Republican senators who voted to convict – Richard Burr, Bill Cassidy, Lisa Murkowski, Mitt Romney, Ben Sasse, Susan Collins and Pat Toomey – have faced an avalanche of condemnation from their own party.

The Republican state parties in Mr. Burr’s North Carolina and Mr. Cassidy’s Louisiana both voted to reprimand them. Senator Lindsey Graham declared on Fox News that Mr. Burr’s vote made certain that Lara Trump, the former president’s daughter-in-law, would win the Republican nomination for his seat in 2022.

The Democrats, meanwhile, were eager to move on. Mr. Biden is trying to push through a US$1.9-trillion COVID-19 stimulus package. He is also expected to present immigration legislation this week.

Story continues below advertisement

Amid all this, the party appears reluctant to continue pursuing Mr. Trump. There has so far been no significant action to invoke the Constitution’s 14th Amendment, a different process that could bar Mr. Trump from running again. Near the end of the trial on Saturday, the Democrats even backed down on an effort to call witnesses, in a bid to get proceedings over with.

Whether Mr. Trump will face criminal charges is unclear.

Constitutional scholar Laurence Tribe contended that, despite Mr. Trump’s acquittal, the trial had made a definitive statement about his unprecedented actions as president.

“The impeachment permanently establishes a historical record of how this president was probably the most dangerous in American history,” said Prof. Tribe of Harvard Law School. “His astonishing and long-lasting campaign to overturn a fair election and hold onto power by whatever means possible distinguishes him from any other president.”

Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow the author of this article:

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies