Political Issue of the Issue: Former President Trump acquitted in second impeachment trial after the January Capitol Riot

Claire Moylan, News Editor

January 6, 2021 during the certification of electoral votes, groups of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol Building. The riot ended with five dead, including a Capitol police officer, 140 Capitol police injured and 58 DC Metro police injured. Furthermore, Congress and other surrounding buildings had to be evacuated.

Preceding the Capitol incident, former President Trump gave a speech at the “Save America” rally to protest the certification of the electoral college votes of the 2020 presidential election. Many believed some of the votes to be fraudulent as votes began to be counted in key swing states on election night in November; they cited the fluctuating vote counts and the numerous eye witness accounts from voting stations as evidence. After Trump’s speech, the rally’s attendees walked to the Capitol Building to protest. Just after 2 p.m., rioters breached the westside of the Capitol and began to enter the building. Despite Trump’s tweets to remind the protestors to be peaceful, chaos within the Capitol Building ensued. 

“I am asking for everyone at the U.S. Capitol to remain peaceful. No violence! Remember, WE are the Party of Law & Order – respect the Law and our great men and women in Blue. Thank you!” said President Trump. 

After the incident, the House of Representatives impeached former President Trump 232-197 January 11, 2021 for incitement of insurrection. The Senate trial lasted one week before the final vote February 13. The vote ended with 57-43 for conviction with the vote to convict falling short of the 67 total votes needed to remove a president from office. Seven Republicans voted with the all Senate Democrats for conviction. His acquittal makes him the first U.S. officeholder to be impeached and acquitted twice.