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Donald Trump acquitted on impeachment charges by US Senate

The US Senate on Wednesday acquitted President Donald Trump of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress following a historic two-week trial.

It was the third impeachment trial of a president and the third acquittal in American history. The Republican-majority Senate voted 52-48 to acquit Trump of abuse of power and 53-47 to acquit him of obstruction of Congress.

The trials of Presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton also concluded in acquittal — a reflection of the Constitution’s high burden for removing a chief executive.

Fifty-two Republicans voted to acquit Trump of abuse of power while all 47 Democrats voted to convict and remove him from office.

Utah Sen. Mitt Romney was the lone Republican to vote in favor of the abuse of power charge. The second article, obstruction of Congress, failed 47-53 — a party-line vote.

The Democratic-controlled House of Representatives impeached Trump on December 18 for withholding military aid to Ukraine to pressure Kiev to investigate his political rival Joe Biden.

Chief Justice John Roberts, who presided over just the third presidential impeachment trial in U.S. history, announced the result on each article of impeachment Wednesday afternoon, bringing the three-week trial to a close.

(AFP)

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