BOSTON (CBS) - Massachusetts politicians reacted Saturday after the Senate voted to acquit former President Donald Trump of inciting the January 6 riot at the Capitol in his second impeachment trial.
50 Democrats and seven Republicans voted that Trump was "Guilty", but it fell short of the two-thirds majority needed to convict him.
In response to the acquittal, Sen. Elizabeth Warren said in a tweet on Saturday:
"Donald Trump incited a mob of domestic terrorists to attack our Capitol and overturn the election. Even 7 Senate Republicans couldn't stomach his act of insurrection. Our democracy must be stronger than the former president and the 43 senators who sided with him today."
Sen. Ed Markey called the acquittal a "get out of jail free card" in an interview with WBZ-TV on Saturday:
"It's a get out of jail free card the Republicans have given him, and I think we're now going to reap the whirlwinds from Donald Trump because he will feel there's no accountability, that there's no restrictions on what he can do or his supporters can do. And that's going to be very dangerous for our country, for our democracy for the next four years."
Following the acquittal, Rep. Lori Trahan called Saturday "a sad day for our nation" in a statement:
"It's a sad day for our nation when elected officials put their own political interests before the future of our democracy. That's what 43 senators did today. They betrayed their oaths to support and defend the Constitution. They did it to show fealty to a man who would have watched them hang from the gallows constructed by insurrectionists if it meant he got to stay in power. The case against Donald Trump was overwhelming. Videos, social media posts, and transcripts show that he incited a violent mob of his supporters to storm the Capitol in an attempt to overturn the election. As officers were beaten, stabbed, and killed, he did nothing. As his own Vice President and members of Congress fled for their lives, he continued to fan the flames. And as the seat of our democracy turned into a warzone, he told the terrorists, 'we love you.' Donald Trump is guilty. Every person who cast their vote today knows that this was his mob. That's why many of them pleaded to him directly to call off the insurgents. Those Republican senators didn't have the courage to vote their conscience, and they'll have to explain that vote to the American people who, unlike them, don't live their lives in fear of losing re-election."
Rep. Seth Moulton wrote in a series of tweets that it "comes as no surprise that so many Republicans in the Senate have once again capitulated to Trump":
"The Republican party has definitively forfeited its credibility on national security. The criminal conspiracy theorists, white nationalist, and anti-government militia members who follow President Trump with absolute devotion pose a direct threat to our nation. On the president's orders, they attacked the Capitol, attacked and murdered police officers—gouged their eyes out, severed their fingers, stabbed them with flagpoles—as they chanted 'Hang Mike Pence.' And for the second time now, the response of the Republican Party, with a few brave exceptions, has been to cower in fear for their political futures. The House didn't impeach Trump because we wanted to; we impeached him because of what he did. As the impeachment managers presented so clearly, the president incited his mob to attack America's lawmakers as we carried out our Constitutional duty to certify the election results. Sadly, it comes as no surprise that so many Republicans in the Senate have once again capitulated to Trump. History will be the final judge of their moral weakness. I do not honestly know how Republicans will gain the trust of the people back. They can start by telling their constituents and themselves the truth."
Rep. Ayanna Pressley said the trial was a "referendum on white supremacist violence":
"This impeachment trial was a referendum on white supremacist violence. 43 Republican senators confirmed they condone it. They enable it. They must be expelled."
The seven Republicans who joined the Democrats in voting to convict President Trump were Richard Burr of North Carolina, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Mitt Romney of Utah, Ben Sasse of Nebraska and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.
After the verdict, Trump released a statement on Saturday, saying, "This has been yet another phase of the greatest witch hunt in the history of our Country. No president has even gone through anything like it, and it continues because our opponents cannot forget the almost 75 million people, the highest number ever for a sitting president, who voted for us just a few months ago."
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