Appearing on CNN, Pennsylvania Republican Senator Pat Toomey argued that impeaching Trump even though he is no longer in office is “clearly constitutional.”
Toomey also said he disagrees with the 45 GOP Senators who voted to dismiss the impeachment trial as not constitutional.
CNN’s Jake Tapper asked “Just days after the Capitol riot, you came on the show, you said President Trump conducted impeachable offenses, he should resign, he could face criminal liability. Some of your colleagues have said he should be acquitted in the Senate trial on Tuesday. Are you going to vote to hold him accountable?”
“I stand by everything I’ve said, Jake.” Toomey replied. “I still think the best outcome would have been for the president to resign. Obviously, he chose not to do that. Now starting Tuesday, I’m going to be a juror, and my job is going to be to objectively evaluate the very specific article of impeachment that is going to be presented to us, has been presented to us, examine that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to listen to the arguments on both sides and make the decision that I think is right.”
Tapper then followed up by asking “You’re one of only five Republican senators who didn’t vote to dismiss the trial outright as unconstitutional. Do you think there is any chance at all that 67 senators will vote to convict President Trump in his impeachment trial, or is this over before it even begins? ”
“I think it’s very unlikely,” Toomey admitted. “You did have 45 Republican senators vote to suggest that they didn’t think it was appropriate to conduct a trial, so you can infer how likely it is that those folks will vote to convict. I disagreed with their assessment. I think it is Constitutional. I think it’s clearly Constitutional to conduct a Senate trial with respect to an impeachment. In this case, the impeachment occurred prior to the president leaving office. My job will be to listen to both sides of this, evaluate the arguments, and make a decision.”
January 26th, Senator Rand Paul predicted “this “trial” is dead on arrival in the Senate.”
The Senate just voted on my constitutional point of order.
45 Senators agreed that this sham of a “trial” is unconstitutional.
That is more than will be needed to acquit and to eventually end this partisan impeachment process.
This “trial” is dead on arrival in the Senate.
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) January 26, 2021