Trump on acquittal: MAGA 'has just begun'
Former President Trump declared victory on Saturday after Senate Republicans voted to acquit him for a second time, saying that his political movement has “only just begun” and that he would have more to share in the near future. Trump thanked his legal team for “upholding justice and defending truth.”
“Our historic, patriotic and beautiful movement to Make America Great Again has only just begun. In the months ahead I have much to share with you, and I look forward to continuing our incredible journey together to achieve American greatness for all of our people,” he said in the statement.
Senators voted 57-43 on whether to convict Trump of high crimes and misdemeanors for “willfully inciting violence against the Government of the United States.” A two-thirds vote was needed to find Trump guilty.
Seven Republicans joined all 50 Democrats in finding Trump guilty over his role in the deadly siege on the Capitol that took place on Jan. 6.
Trump was banned from Twitter days after the Capitol riot, and has been quiet since leaving office, having done no interviews since his presidency ended.
But Trump's influence hangs over his party, even as a number of Republicans say they would love to move on from him.
The seven Republicans who voted to convict him sent the signal it is time to move on in as loud a way as possible.
But the vast majority of Republicans did not, for a range of reasons that includes Trump's power within the party.
In the statement, Trump gave his “deepest thanks” to the Republicans in the Senate who he said “stood proudly for the Constitution we all revere and for the sacred legal principles at the heart of our country.”
“I also want to convey my gratitude to the millions of decent, hardworking, law-abiding, God-and-Country loving citizens who have bravely supported these important principles in these very difficult and challenging times,” Trump said.
Trump decried what he described as the “latest phase of the greatest witch hunt in the history of our Country.”
He accused Democrats of using heated rhetoric around the social justice protests from over the summer, an argument his legal team made as part of his defense.
“It is a sad commentary on our times that one political party in America is given a free pass to denigrate the rule of law, defame law enforcement, cheer mobs, excuse rioters, and transform justice into a tool of political vengeance, and persecute, blacklist, cancel and suppress all people and viewpoints with whom or which they disagree,” Trump said.
“I always have, and always will, be a champion for the unwavering rule of law, the heroes of law enforcement, and the right of Americans to peacefully and honorably debate the issues of the day without malice and without hate.”
It’s sleepy by Donald Trump’s standards, but the former president’s century-old estate in New York’s Westchester County could end up being one of his bigger legal nightmares. Seven Springs, a 213-acre swath of nature surrounding a Georgian-style mansion, is a subject of two state investigations: a criminal probe by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. and a civil inquiry by New York Attorney General Letitia James. Both investigations focus on whether Trump manipulated the property’s value to reap greater tax benefits from an environmental conservation arrangement he made at the end of 2015, while running for president.
Senator Lindsey Graham has defended his refusal to abandon Donald Trump in the aftermath of the deadly attack on the Capitol, saying that though the former president has “a dark side … what I’m trying to do is just harness the magic”. He also said Trump’s continued grip on the Republican party could make it “bigger, he can make it stronger, he can make it more diverse. And he also could destroy it.”
Donald Trump could arrive in New York City for his first visit since leaving the White House as soon as Sunday night, according to multiple reports. The former president was born in Queens and rose to fame in Manhattan but changed his primary residence to Florida in 2019 and has been at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach since leaving Washington on 20 January.
The Senate approved a $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief plan on Saturday, as Democrats muscled through a marathon debate — and overcame dissent from moderates within their own ranks — to move one step closer to delivering President Biden his first legislative victory. Democrats voted to adopt the bill without any Republican support after a roughly 24-hour, around-the-clock session, though it will now fall to the House to consider the sweeping package once again before it can become law and any of the aid can be dispersed.