Court dates handle a new set of impeachment trials regarding former President Donald J. Trump. This is the second set of impeachment trials taking place during Trump’s presidency, and society sits at the edge of its seats awaiting the results.
It is already known that Trump has previously been impeached, but not removed from office by the senate. We now await the results of the current trials, standing by while this process comes to an end. This makes former President Trump the first-ever president to be impeached twice.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “impeach” as “to charge with a crime or misdemeanor.” The first time, Trump was impeached on the basis of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. In July 2019, he had engaged in a phone call with the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky making a request to investigate the energy company, Burisma, that Joe Biden’s son worked for.
He was also suspected of bargaining with Zelensky in order to be re-elected in 2020. This did not lead to a removal of office, allowing him to be impeached for a second time for the influence he had with the riots that took place at the Capitol building on Jan. 6.
This article of impeachment charges Trump with “incitement of insurrection.” This was not unexpected, given that these rioters were there on behalf of the former president.
Just over a year ago, all House Republicans voted against the first impeachment, now a second time around, a historic number of 10 House Republicans voted in favor of the impeachment. One of these Republicans, Rep. Jaime Herrera states: “My vote to impeach our sitting president is not a fear-based decision. I am not choosing a side; I am choosing truth,”.
There is also debate on whether or not holding an impeachment trial for a former president is constitutional. GOP Sen. Rand Paul states that there is a belief within Republicans that the Senate should not hold an impeachment trial since Trump is now a “private citizen and therefore is not subject to the punishment of removal from office.”
Though it may be true that Trump has already been removed from office, a full impeachment would limit his presidential benefits and would restrict his ability to run for federal office again. With this said, Article II, Section 4 of the United States Constitution states that: “The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” Whatever is decided of this situation will set a precedent going forward for future impeachment trials and how they are handled in different circumstances.
Following one of the most controversial presidencies, former President Donald J. Trump continues to make history after facing not one, but two impeachments. We continue to wait for the final verdict of the Senate on whether or not Trump will be “removed from office” (although he already has) to put the final cap on this presidency.