Sen. Susan Collins to Vote to Acquit Trump: His Actions Are ‘Improper’ but Not Impeachable

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) announced that she would vote to acquit President Donald Trump on both articles of impeachment.

During a speech on the Senate floor on Tuesday, Collins said Trump’s actions were “improper and demonstrated poor judgment” but did not rise to the level of an impeachable offense. 

Collins said there was “conflicting evidence” in House impeachment manager’s claim that Trump put the hold on military aid to Ukraine solely to pressure officials there to open an investigation of former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden.

“Regardless, it was wrong for President Trump to mention former Vice President Biden on that phone call, and it was wrong for him to ask a foreign country to investigate a political rival,” Collins said. 

Watch Collins’ speech below:

Collins said the House Judiciary Committee’s report on Trump’s actions alleged that the president committed crimes, but the first article of impeachment — regarding abuse of power — “does not even attempt to assert that the President committed a crime.”

She continued to say that the impeachment managers “failed to address that point in their response” to her question about why the articles of impeachment did not allege that Trump committed a crime.

Collins suggested that because neither article of impeachment alleges that Trump committed a crime, the standard for an impeachable offense is even higher. 

“While I do not believe that the conviction of a President requires a criminal act, the high bar for removal from office is perhaps even higher when the impeachment is for a difficult-to-define noncriminal act.”

She added that she felt the House “did little to support its assertion in Article I that the President ‘will remain a threat to national security and the Constitution if allowed to remain in office.'” 

“For all of the reasons I have discussed, I will vote to acquit on Article I,” Collins said. 

Regarding the second article of impeachment, Collins said House Democrats should have gone to court to compel Executive Branch officials to testify before charging Trump with obstruction of Congress.

“At a minimum, the House should have pursued the full extent of its own remedies before bringing impeachment charges, including by seeking the assistance of a neutral third party – the Judicial Branch.”

“Therefore, I will vote to acquit on Article II,” she said.

Finally, Collins said she believes that the voters should decide whether Trump deserves another four years in the White House, “We should entrust to the people the most fundamental decision of a democracy, namely, who should lead their country.”

In an interview with CBS News after her speech, Collins said she thinks Trump will be “much more cautious” about asking for foreign assistance after the impeachment proceedings. 

“I believe that the president has learned from this case,” Collins said. “The president has been impeached. That’s a pretty big lesson.”

Collins was one of three Republican senators who were seen as potential swing votes in the Senate’s impeachment trial. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), also once seen as a swing vote, announced on Monday she would vote to acquit Trump. 

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), the third Republican potentially on the edge, is slated to speak about his decision at 2 p.m. on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.), who is running for re-election this year and was seen as a possible swing vote among Democrats, announced that he would vote to convict Trump.

“After many sleepless nights, I have reluctantly concluded that the evidence is sufficient to convict the President for both abuse of power and obstruction of Congress,” Jones wrote in a statement on Wednesday.

The Senate is expected to hold an up-or-down vote on the two articles of impeachment Wednesday afternoon.

Responses

  1. Hey Susie Q, I don’t know what you have been watching or apparently NOT been watching. but there is a video out there and it’s been there for a while. It shows Biden threatening Ukraine that he will withhold financial aid to Ukraine if they don’t fire the prosecutor investigating Burisma, and the employment of his son at a monthly payment of anywhere between 50-80,000 dollars a month. In a business Hunter Biden has no clue what is happening. And Hunter Biden’s job with China. You don’t think that they need to be looked into? You are okay with continuing to provide money to a country that was considered the 3rd most corrupt country in the world? President Zelensky appears to be an honest leader and wants to establish better relations with the US. The transcript of the conversation between Trump and Zelensky shows there were no threats of any kind. President Trump is doing what any President needs to do, insure that any funds we send to other countries will be utilizes properly and not end up in the pockets of corrupt businesses and government officials. Why the hell aren’t more politicians not demanding some kind of investigation take place about this?

    1. “there is a video out there and it’s been there for a while. It shows Biden threatening Ukraine that he will withhold financial aid to Ukraine if they don’t fire the prosecutor investigating Burisma” John Straub

      You do realize that there is a ton of discussion that proves what you say is total nonsense, right?

      Talk about being confused.

  2. Hey, Susan, how big is that punchbowl that your Dear Leader gave you?

  3. Senator Collins also did not consider perjury an impeachable offense in the Clinton impeachment trial. She voted not guilty on both articles then too.

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