Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) is among the 45 GOP senators who formally questioned the legitimacy of the upcoming impeachment trial against former President Trump, referring to it as both “partisan and unconstitutional.”
“Today I voted to support Senator Rand Paul’s objection to holding a partisan, unconstitutional trial against a former President,” Blackburn said in a statement following the vote.
“It is time for our country to move forward, instead of looking backwards and fighting the same battles with each other,” she added:
Today I voted to support Senator Rand Paul‘s objection to holding a partisan, unconstitutional trial against a former President. It is time for our country to move forward, instead of looking backwards and fighting the same battles with each other.
— Sen. Marsha Blackburn (@MarshaBlackburn) January 26, 2021
The Senate voted on Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-KY) point of order on Tuesday on the constitutionality of the upcoming impeachment trial against the former president. House managers delivered the article of impeachment Monday evening, which accuses Trump of “incitement of insurrection” for the Capitol protests that occurred on January 6. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) requested to table the motion, which passed 55-45. However, the vote proved that Republicans have more than enough votes to acquit Trump for the second time.
“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,” Paul said Tuesday, declaring the trial “dead on arrival”:
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
Earlier on the Senate floor, Paul pointed to the double standard of his colleagues on the other side of the aisle who accuse Trump, and a handful of members of the GOP, of inciting the violence that occurred on January 6:
Sen. Rand Paul:
"No Democrat will honestly ask whether Bernie Sanders incited the shooter that nearly killed Steve Scalise."
"No Democrat will ask whether Maxine Waters incited violence when she literally told her supporters" to confront Trump officials in public. pic.twitter.com/ytDKsscxgh
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) January 26, 2021
He made the same argument in an op-ed published in the Washington Examiner on Tuesday.
“But what of Democrats’ words, what of Democrats’ incitement to violence? No Democrat will honestly ask whether Bernie Sanders incited the shooter who nearly killed Rep. Steve Scalise and a volunteer coach of the congressional Republican baseball squad,” Paul wrote:
The shooter nearly pulled off a massacre, all because he fervently believed the false and inflammatory rhetoric spewed by Sanders and other Democrats — lines such as “The Republican healthcare plan for the uninsured is that you die.” As this avowed Bernie supporter shot at us, he screamed, “This is for healthcare!”
No Democrat will ask whether Sen. Cory Booker incited violence when he called for his supporters to get “up in the face” of congresspeople, a very visual and specific incitement.
No Democrat will ask whether Maxine Waters incited violence when she literally told her supporters, and I quote, “If you see a member of the Trump Cabinet at a restaurant, a department store, a gas station, or any place, you create a crowd and you push back on them.” My wife and I were pushed and surrounded by the type of mob Waters likes to inspire. It’s terrifying to have a swarm of people threaten to kill you, curse at you, and hold you literally hostage until police come to your rescue. No Democrat has ever considered impeaching Waters for her violent rhetoric.
Notably, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who has not revealed how he plans to vote in the trial, is among the senators who sided with Paul:
55-45 vote against Rand Paul's motion that the impeachment is unconstitutional because Trump is no longer in office. Senate Minority Leader McConnell voted with Paul.
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) January 26, 2021
Democrats would need 17 Republicans to side with them in order to convict Trump.