The Republican Senators who voted to impeach Donald Trump for inciting insurrection must have felt that they are doing God’s work, and that their popularity would increase and they’ll be honoured by the public and maybe the GOP because of their stand. But none of that happened and now they are being hounded by senior GOP leaders.
After the failed impeachment trial, Trump’s approval ratings have gone up and the GOP is threatened because of the unrelenting rise in Trump’s popularity. The Republicans who wanted Trump impeached are now in deep waters in their party. The Republicans understand the massive backing Donald Trump has from the general public and if he does form the ‘patriot party’, GOP will lose terribly in terms of support for conservatives in the US.
The seven Republican Senators who voted to convict former President Donald Trump of inciting the deadly January 6 uprising feel the heat back home already.
Several Republican state parties immediately moved to punish or condemn home-state senators for breaking with the 43 other Republicans in the Senate who voted in his second impeachment trial to acquit Trump.
Louisiana GOP censured Sen. Bill Cassidy at once, while North Carolina and Pennsylvania State Party officials released harsh statements expressing disappointment at Sens Richard Burr’s and Pat Toomey’s votes cast on Saturday.
The movements are the latest in a range of censorship and punitive measures directed towards senators who have been critical of former president following the Capitol Riot.
The state party in Wyoming voted to censure Rep. Liz Cheney for her vote in the Senate to impeach Trump. After opting not to help Trump’s attempt to subvert election results, the Arizona Republican Party censured Republican Governor Doug Ducey.
Trump, acquitted of inciting the uprising, still has strong support among Republican supporters, and elected officials who have been critical of his conduct have been lashed out by state and local parties.
Senators Richard Burr, Bill Cassidy, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Ben Sasse, and Pat Toomey have all been either censured or criticized or both. This is so because the GOP understands the influence Trump still yields.
According to a poll of 1,984 registered voters found that 54% of Republican respondents said they would vote for Trump in a hypothetical GOP primary in a survey taken February 14 to February 15, just after the end of his second impeachment trial, a return to the share reported to support the President just before the Capitol riot.
59% of Republican respondents Morning Consult/Politico poll said Trump should “play a major role” in the future of the Republican Party, up 18 points.
In his farewell speech, President Trump had mentioned ‘the movement had just begun’ and rumours of a new political party gained traction. Trump as an enemy would be more harmful to the Republicans than a strong Democrat party. Trump in opposition can potentially destroy the GOP by sweeping away the majority of people who support Trump.
6 out of 7 Republican senators who voted for impeachment were disciplined for their actions in the senate by their state GOPs. But in Utah, the home of Republican Senator Mitt Romney, the state GOP has refused to criticize him. Signalling the divide among Republicans is just contained to one state and most likely to only one Republican.
Mitt Romney who aspires to be the 2024 GOP presidential candidate has most likely sabotaged his agenda by voting to convict Trump in the Senate impeachment trial.
With their party censuring and disciplining them, the 7 republicans have lost footing. Whatever their agenda, or whatever they had hoped to gain by voting against Trump has reached its watershed moment. Why? Because Trump was acquitted.